A blaze devoured a fire engine and water pumper tender at Nehalem Bay Fire and Rescue (NBFR) Station 11 pre-dawn Sunday.
By Brian Cameron
Nearby farmers, witnessing flames coming out of what appeared to be a house or a barn just next door called in the fire at approximately 2:30 a.m. Firefighters said they were shocked to see the structure in question was NBFR’s own rural volunteer fire protection Station 11.
And the damage could total as much as $1 million.
“We were toned out as a regular structure fire, our guys had no idea it was the station itself,” Perry Sherbaugh, NBFR Fire Chief, said. “Everyone was in shock, no one was expecting the station to be the incident.”
According to Sherbaugh the cause of the blaze has been determined to be an electrical fire originating in the fire engine that was sitting outside the structure at the time. The affected engine was a Type-1 1,000-gallon engine as well as the 3,000-gallon water pumper tender.
“Ultimately vehicles are man-made and can have faults of their own,” Sherbaugh said. “There’s still a lot to be determined about the incident but it appears to have been electrical in nature.”
The fire was considered a two-alarm event when Chief Sherbaugh made the decision to call in extra resources from both Rockaway Beach and Cannon Beach. It was reported that Rockaway Beach sent an actual engine to the fire itself and Cannon Beach extended coverage to Station 13 to handle any additional issues within the District.
No one was in the station at the time of the fire so and no injuries were reported with the incident, but damage to the property was severe. Though NBFR was insured for this kind of event, they are still investigating the extent of the damage but according to Sherbaugh the dollar amount could be near $1 million in structural damage.
A total of 14 firefighters were on the scene and it took them approximately 30 minutes to extinguish once they arrived at the Station. The Oregon State Fire Marshal’s office aided NBFR with the investigation.
“Our guys did a great job controlling the fire and knocking it down,” said Sherbaugh. “It’s the kind of incident you can’t really expect but do your best regardless of the circumstances.”
There have been a few corrections to this story as follows:
- The district was toned to a structure fire at the NBFRD Station 11, so the guys did know the fire was there. “They were surprised to hear it”
- The fire apparatus was parked in the fire station when it caught fire. We had it towed out for investigation purposes.
- Estimated damage is not known at this time, we are working with our insurance company to come up with a final loss. Damages may not be known for quite some time.