Winter Fire by Barry

Wednesday July 8th 2015

In the late winter of this year on March 10th we had a shed fire. As I was washing our dinner dishes as Eric said, “The shed is on fire!” I didn’t believe him and asked, “Are you serious?”, and he said, “Yes the shed is on fire, what should we do?” I saw the panic in his face and dropped what I was doing and we both ran out side.

After a long day of work on a dreary and cloudy day, we got home and needed a bit more power for dinner making so we fired up the generator for a bit. This was the warmest day of the year so far and it was about 50 degrees F. We put the generator away into the shed too warm and somehow something caught on fire.

Rubble and Charred Shed

When we ran outside we brought out our fire extinguisher, but at that point the fire had spread to our 3 gallon jug of gasoline so there was no putting it out with anything. All we could do at this point was keep it from spreading to other structures. In was a sad sight to see our brand new riding lawn mower just start to catch fire, and know that there was nothing I could do. Fortunately we had some water buckets pumped ahead of time so we starting throwing water on the flames to keep them down. We also started throwing water on our solar panel structure. At this point the flames we reaching all the way up to the wind generator, and the breeze concentrated the heat enough to melt the galvanized steel pipe that the wind generator was mounted on. I watched as the wind generator fell over and landed directly in the middle of the blaze.

The heat was so intense that the adjacent shed 10 feet away started on fire, so to prevent that from going as well I got between the sheds and put the fire out on the other one. The flames we hot and because of this I got 2nd degree burns on my face. In the mean time Eric called 911, and I told him don’t bother because the shed will be completely burned down by the time the fire department got there, but he was concerned that it would spread to our cabin. It was about 45 minutes after he called before they arrived and at that time it had been about 1 hour since we first noticed the fire. At this point all that was left of the shed was a bed of coals and the frames of the lawn mower and generator.

The fire department helped us to make sure the fire was out and that the adjacent structures wouldn’t start back up on fire. They also insisted that my burns were in dire need of immediate treatment, and demanded that I go in the ambulance to the hospital immediately. My burns weren’t all as bad as they thought, and I didn’t have any smoke inhalation so I thought that going to the hospital was overkill. After their constant persistence I went with them for a $800 ride and ended up waiting over an hour at the hospital to see the doctor. The doctor spent all of 2 minutes with me and said keep it bandaged, clean, and moist for a few weeks, but I already knew all of the proper care. Needless to say I wish I would have just waited till everything had died down and just had Eric drive me to the hospital.

Rubble and Charred Shed

The day after the fire we got in contact with our insurance company and began the process of compiling lists of all of our losses. The grand total with the $1000 fire department bill was about $11,000. In the end with depreciation they gave us about $8,000. One thing that really made things rough was that the wiring for the solar array had all burned up, so we had to run off the generator till we could get that repaired.

At the time of this writing we have: