Quick response from fire department preserves resident’s personal belongings
By Sarah Pridgeon
A house fire in Sundance on Monday initially went unnoticed, says Fire Chief Chris Tomford. Because the smoke remained trapped in the home for some time after the fire began, he estimates it could have been burning for over an hour before the fire department was alerted.
“We got the call at about 3:15 p.m. When I got there, the smoke was coming out of the eaves and the roof and the little windows were black from the smoke on the inside,” he says.
The home is located in the trailer park south of the Forest Service building. Employees at the Forest Service told Tomford that they had been able to smell the smoke for over an hour, but had not been able to figure out where it was coming from.
“I don’t know how long it had been burning, but it had been burning for quite a while before we got the call,” he says.
“One of the investigators from the State Fire Marshall’s Office came up and said it was caused by a small propane leak behind the stove.”
Tomford responded to the fire with Officer Dan Bush. The first Sundance Volunteer Fire Department engine to arrive was manned by Bob Latham, Curt Williamson and Lars Williamson.
It took around one hour to extinguish the fire, says Tomford. After that, the team checked for extension of the fire and found very little needing attention.
“The whole kitchen area and part of the living area were damaged, everything else was actually in pretty good shape,” Tomford says.
“A lot of his personal items will be recoverable. There is some stuff that, just from the heat in there, got melted, but you can recover a lot of the stuff.”
The home itself, however, will no longer be habitable. An older trailer home, it is thought to have been built in around 1984.
“The roof above the kitchen caved in and collapsed – that’s where the fire was,” Tomford says.
The homeowner, Scott Keyworth, was at work in town when the fire began and was not injured. His two dogs also escaped unharmed thanks to the doggie door.
“He was worried about the dogs, but they had already got out and were out in the back yard,” Tomford says.
Tomford expresses great pride in the quick and efficient response from the fire department, which will enable Keyworth to recover a portion of his belongings.
“Our guys, once again, saved another trailer house, which is pretty tough to do. They did a great job again,” he says.
Donations to assist Keyworth can be taken to Sundance Dillon’s Hardware Store. He wears a size XXL shirt, 38-29 pants and size 12 shoes; dog food and household goods are also welcomed. Monetary donations can be made in his name at Sundance State Bank.