Fire destroys home after four hour battle


Amid the extreme temperatures and high humidity on Thursday afternoon, firefighters from seven companies had to battle heavy fire and smoke at the scene of a structure fire near the 1000 Block of Raleigh Avenue in South Hill
Despite the efforts of all who responded the home along with its contents were lost, displacing two individuals.
At approximately 3 p.m. South Hill, Boydton, Chase City, La Crosse, Palmer Springs, Lake Gaston and Buckhorn volunteer fire departments as well as units from the South Hill Police Department and Southside Rescue Squad responded to the Raleigh Avenue fire.
Once on scene heavy fire could be seen coming through the roof.
Deputy Chief of SHVFD, Michael Vaughan said “This fire presented an unusual circumstance as the fire was all overhead of the members arriving on scene, heavy fire coming through the roofing the firefighters had to fight the fire above their heads.”
Despite the number of departments that assisted the fire took approximately four hours and 103,000 gallons of water to extinguish.
Vaughan would like thank the many agencies that turned out to assist in “this massive blaze we would not have been able to protect other homes without their help to contain the blaze.”
As the firefighters continued to battle the massive fire, South Hill Police Chief Stuart Bowen, with little regard to the danger took it upon himself to enter the home’s attached garage to remove the vehicles that were being stored inside before they received any damage.
The fire is believed to have started from a malfunctioning lawn mower that had just been used, by the person home at the time of the fire, to cut the lawn.
While the responders worked to extinguish the blaze, members of the community provided support by ensuring the men and women were taken care of.
Vaughan wanted to thank the community for “their outpouring of citizen support by bringing water and gatorade.”
There were minor injures reported amongst the firefighters including heat exhaustion and minor cuts and scrapes, but all were able to be treated by SSRS and released on scene.