I want to know what your most miserable fire was to work at. Be it due to weather conditions, size of the fire, LODD, really anything that just made it stick in your mind as a fire you would just as soon never work at again.
Mine was a fully involved structure fire--the house/mansion was about 20,000 sq. feet. It was about a twenty mile drive for us and we were running mutual aid. To give you an idea of how big it was, IC called out a 5th alarm and a 4th tanker plan to which the dispatcher replied "command, you dont have a 4th tanker plan." lol
It was in the middle of January during a nasty northwest indiana winter. The air tempature was right around 0 without the windchill. Every hydrant we could find was frozen so we had to run tankers a good distance away from the fire to fill. Pumps froze, hoze froze, ff's were freezing lol, doors froze. After about 5 hours on scene, we were released by command, our 5" hose attached to the pump was literally frozen solid. We wanted to go soooo badly that my captain chopped the hoze in half with an axe (none of the saws would start) and we drove home with about a 2 foot section of frozen 5" still attached to the pump panel.
I've been to 2 fatality aircraft incidents, 1 fatality structure fire, 1 double fatality vehicle fire & a major motor vehicle collision with 10 vehicles involved, two on fire on our arrival with a total of 6 fatalities in the burnt vehicles alone. There is more but like CAPT said where death is involved it is bad period!
I think my worst fire was a barn fire we had at a members house.The temp.was about 3 degrees and the wind chill was minus 10 or so.There was 350 head of cattle in the barn and a full season worth of hay in the loft. We were on scene for over 20 hours and every thing was freezing up.The part of the night that sticks in my memory the most was when 1 of our mutual aid companies called from the fill site to say their tanker was out of fuel.Then other trucks started calling to say they were very low on fuel.We called in a heating oil delivery truck to start fueling all the apparatus.
We had a body removal of a man who had been dead in his trailer for a week in July . Thats a smell that just wont go away. Also was Mutual Aide on a three children fatality structure fire that sucked. ITs something that i will never forget.
This last Friday was pretty bad. It was a fully involved structure with three children trapped inside. They were six, four, and two. But what made it really bad is that we had trailer fire about three months earlier that claimed the lives of three and five year old sisters.
I never been to a fire were anybody died in but the worst one I been to was in the middle of july and it was about 95 to 100 dergees out and it was a fully involved house fire we had to call in three other dept to help with the heat out and pluse the heat from the fire it was like 300 degrees and 6 firemen had to go to the hospital cause of heat strokes.
Two come to mind. February 1995 abandoned mill fire that went 3 alarms in sub freezing weather. Crews on deluge guns rotated out every 20 minutes for rehab. Second was fathers day weekend 2001. Tropical storm Allison hammered us. We had an apartment complex surrounded by 15' deep water. One of the building units exploded from a gas leak. We saved three and watched two burn to death. Think about that night every day since.
mine was my first year on my department and there was only four of us at the engine house when the tones drop for a working house fire when we got on scene there were flames shooting thought the windows and front door we were on scene for 10 hours all together it was longest night of my life the it was the night before Christmas