Wednesday, June 27, 2012

2-Alarm Dumpster Fire Results In Hazmat Response

Photo By Bruce Dembecki
At approximately 9:00 P.M., on Wednesday, June 27, a fire was reported in a dumpster at the rear of a commercial building at 2000 Concourse Drive in San Jose. Initially dispatched as a smoke investigation arriving firefighters were confronted with a dumpster that was well ablaze, and flames climbing the wall of the building. A first alarm was struck, and when firefighters got inside and discovered heavy smoke and some fire damage on the second floor above the dumpster, a second alarm was called.
Next to the dumpster, firefighters found a canister containing a number of Lithium Ion battery cells that was also burning, and presented a challenge to extinguish. While the structure was cleared and the fire stopped before it spread far into the building, the Li-Ion batteries would constantly reignite. The batteries and the smoke they were emitting upgraded the incident to a Hazmat incident and mutual aid from County Fire's Hazmat 2 team was summoned to the scene, along with Fire Associates.
Fire Associates member Bruce Dembecki responded with Fire Support Unit 2 and he was met on scene by members Mike Chappell, Ron Green and Jerry Haag. A Rehab station was set up away from problem area and both hot and cold drinks were popular on a warm summer's evening. Fire Support Unit 2 was on scene from 10:20 P.M. until after midnight before being released. San Jose crews were still working on smoke evacuation and other tasks on scene as late as 2:00 A.M.
-- Report Submitted by Bruce Dembecki