Second Alarm Structure Fire


January 22, 2022

9:38 p.m. at 132 Old Essex Rd. in Manchester.

On Saturday, January 22, 2022, at 9:38 p.m. hours, the Manchester-by-the-Sea Fire Department was dispatched to 132 Old Essex Road for a reported small fire that had been extinguished by the homeowner.  While enroute, units were notified over the radio that there was still an active fire in the residence.  Engine 1 arrived on scene and crews were directed to the basement by the homeowner. Crews found active fire in the basement ceiling.  After making an initial attack with a 2 ½ gallon water can, it was determined that the fire had spread vertically and had broken out on both the first and second floors.  Crews then stretched a handline into the building and continued to attack the fire.  Car 1, Chief Cleary, responding from home, struck the first alarm, recruiting fire crews from Essex, Beverly, and Gloucester to the scene.  Hamilton and Wenham reported to the Manchester Fire Station for coverage.  Northeast Ambulance responded for medical standby.

Under cold and icy conditions, units made an aggressive interior attack for hidden fire. A second alarm was struck due to a limited water supply in the area.  Hamilton and Wenham went to the scene to assist.  Danvers and Ipswich subbed in for station coverage.  National Grid responded to the scene to cut power to the house.

REHAB 5 provided a warming bus, hydration and food to the unit’s operating at the scene.  The Manchester Police provided traffic control.  The Manchester Water Department and DPW provided assistance with fire hydrants and sanding the driveway to the residence and surrounding roadways.

The scene was declared under control at 12:30 a.m., but required extensive overhaul.  The Massachusetts State Fire Marshal’s Office was called to the scene to assist with the investigation. The majority of mutual aid was released by 1:30 a.m.  Danvers remained in quarters until the Manchester apparatus was back in service.  They were released at 7 a.m.

A Manchester engine and crew remained on scene overnight until 8 a.m. as a fire watch.  Damage to the residence is extensive.  A dollar loss has not yet been determined.  There was one minor firefighter injury that was treated at the scene.  No other injuries were reported.  The cause is still under investigation.

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