Thursday, July 26, 2012

3-Alarm Fire Hits 3 Cupertino Residences


Photo By Bruce Dembecki
(You can click on these photos for larger versions)
Shortly after 3:30 P.M. on Thursday July 26, Santa Clara County Fire Department received reports of a stove fire at 10510 N. Stelling Rd, Cupertino. Responding units reported smoke showing from 2 miles away and the incident was upgraded to a full first alarm.
Once on scene, units reported that a shed at the back of a house was fully involved, and that exposures on several sides were being affected by fire. It was upgraded quickly over the next 5 minutes to a second and then third alarm.
It was later determined that one of the residents of the house liked to cook fish in the shed, and had turned on the stove and apparently placed a piece of wood on the stove, before returning to the house. Several minutes later the resident returned to find the shed engulfed in flames. The shed was close to three houses and all three suffered significant fire damage, and left uninhabitable at the end of the day, displacing many people from the three houses.
Fire Associates member Bruce Dembecki was doing routine maintenance on Fire Support Unit 2 and had just picked up a load of ice for the freezers and was on Hwy 280. While Cupertino is normally in the Fire Support Unit 1 response area, after a brief discussion with the FASCV North County team, it was quickly agreed since Bruce was already out, and FSU 2 was loaded, it should respond to this incident. Bruce arrived to set up Rehab and was met on scene by Jerry Haag, George Hoyt and Ron Green, and later on FASCV guest Walter Huber dropped by to lend a hand.
Photo By Bruce Dembecki
It was the warm part of a summer afternoon and firefighters were working hard on 3 different houses, they were hot and thirsty. Over the next 5 hours, firefighters from County Fire and San Jose Fire (on scene providing Mutual Aid) consumed all 5 cases of Gatorade on FSU 2, and all but one case of bottled water, along with 5 gallons of lemonade. Everyone was glad Fire Associates was on scene!
The shed was destroyed, but the three houses, while uninhabitable, are repairable and no-one was hurt. Another great performance from local fire crews kept the damage to a minimum. Fire Support Unit 2 was back in quarters in San Jose by 8:30 P.M.
-- Report Submitted By Bruce Dembecki