Contact: Captain John Metz
Duty PIO Pager 573-441-6608 (For Active Emergency Incidents - Leave detailed message)
Office 573-874-7644 (M-F, 8-5)
At 2:35 p.m. on January 1st, 2013, the Columbia Fire Department responded to a reported structure fire in a duplex at 4507 Rice Road. Columbia firefighters arrived four minutes later, at 2:39 p.m., to find heavy smoke coming from the front door and the garage of the two-story gray and white duplex.
Firefighters confirmed everyone was safely out of the duplex and then entered the home through the front door and, using a single hose line, attacked the fire. Most of the fire was located in a laundry room at the rear of the duplex. The fire was brought under control in about 15 minutes. Fire crews overhauled the damage to ensure the fire was out and then used fans to remove the remaining smoke in the building.
The fire was discovered when an occupant of the unit smelled smoke and notified the property owners who were working on a neighboring duplex. One of the owners discovered the fire in the laundry room and instructed the tenant to call 9-1-1. The property is owned by Michael and Faye Krueger.
The duplex sustained fire and smoke damage to the laundry room and family room on the first floor and heat and smoke damage to the three bedrooms and a bathroom located on the second floor. Columbia Fire Marshal Lt. Shawn McCollom estimated the damage at $30,000 to the structure and contents. Lt. McCollom investigated the fire and determined it originated at the clothes dryer in the laundry room. Smoke alarms were present and were sounding when fire crews arrived. There were no pets in the residence and there were no injuries. The home is uninhabitable and the occupants will be staying with family. The tenants were unsure if they had renter's insurance.
Three fire engines, a ladder truck, and a rescue squad responded to the blaze. Fire Crews were on the scene for approximately 90 minutes.
The Columbia Fire Department wants to remind residents that working smoke alarms do save lives. Test your smoke alarms at least once a month by pressing the test button. Replace smoke alarm batteries at least once a year. Replace smoke alarms every 10 years. To ensure adequate protection, place smoke alarms in every sleeping room, and in a common area on every floor.