East River house fire under investigation.
The cause of a fire that destroyed a home in Truckee last Thursday is yet to be determined, but answers are expected early this week, according to Truckee fire officials.
Damage to the house at 10311 East River St. was extensive.
“There was a total loss of the second floor, and the first had smoke and water damage. It will probably be a total loss,” said Greg Burch, battalion chief with Truckee Fire Protection District.
“We were dealing with 130 to 140 years of construction, there were void spaces to deal with from different construction techniques from different construction periods,” Burch said.
Because of the unique nature of fighting a fire in an old building, a unique tool was used from a neighboring fire district.
“A compressed air foam system from Incline Village was brought in,” Burch said. “The foam clings to combustibles, it’s a great product for this type of situation. Its good for keeping the fire from getting oxygen.”
Other techniques required in dealing with such an old building involved a lot of cutting and checking for “extension” of the fire, Burch said.
The owner of the home was contacted by the fire department and was present the afternoon of the fire, and also owned the home next door, Burch said.
– Compressed Air Foam (CAF) is a more efficient cooling medium than water fog and achieves faster ‘knockdown” of fires while using significantly less water.
– It has a significantly longer throw than that achievable with fog attack.
– Unlike water, Compressed Air Foam applied to ceilings and walls remains in place and continues to absorb heat from fire gases until all the water within it has been vaporized.
– The reduction in the amount of water used reduces steam produced, creating better visibility.
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