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Quick action by occupants saves Ossipee church from fire


October 15, 2020
OSSIPEE — On Thursday, Oct. 8 at 1:19 p.m., Center Ossipee Fire was dispatched to 50 Route 16b, the First Congregational Church of Ossipee, for a phone call reporting smoke in the building.

Upon arrival of Chief Dana Cullen, Jr., a building occupant stated that the smoke was coming from a closet in the children's center, further investigation determined that was correct information. A first alarm assignment had already be started by dispatch. Engine 3, under the command of Captain Cameron Quigley arrived and began extinguishment. An aggressive interior attack was performed, knocking down the fire in the closet. The fire was contained to the room of origin. The response was so fast by the fire department that the fire alarm wasn't even sounding until the first engine arrived on scene. A total of 28 personnel worked on the scene. Water supply was set up using a hydrant on Route 16b. Alert and aware patrons coupled with a quick response by the fire department undoubtedly averted a great property loss. The cause of this fire was determined to be a central vacuum system unit on the first floor.

"Everything worked [that day]; a patron noticed smoke, called the fire department, we responded quickly, hooked up to a hydrant, got water and extinguished the fire," said Cullen. "For a fire to go right involves a lot of departments. Training pays off. Averting what really would have been great property damage and a loss to the community; this building is an important part of Ossipee."

The incident caused an estimated $3,000 in damage to the property.

Assisting Center Ossipee Fire on scene were: Ossipee Police Department, Action Ambulance, West Ossipee Fire, Freedom Fire, Wakefield Fire, Tuftonboro Fire, Tamworth Fire & Madison Fire.

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