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Tuftonboro FD rescues woman trapped by house fire

January 06, 2021
TUFTONBORO — The Tuftonboro Fire and Rescue Department responded to a mid-day fire in a modular home on Pine Tree Drive in North Country Village on Dec. 5 in which the female occupant was trapped.

Chief Adam Thompson, reporting to the Board of Selectmen on Dec. 28, said the first units arrived to find that neighbors Rick Sargent and George Storch had shut the propane feeding a wall mounted propane heater in the area of the fire.

He said that Sargent then kicked in a locked back door and crawled into the smoke and heat filled home to pull the resident out to safety. She was placed in the police department's cruiser until Tuftonboro's ambulance arrived to transport her to Huggins Hospital for treatment for smoke inhalation and minor burns.

"I believe that Mr. Sargent saved the occupant's life," said Thompson.

The chief reported that the fire was extinquished quickly, but the resulting smoke and fire damage rendered the home inhabitable. There were no working smoke detectors in the residence. Thompson

reminds residents that the department (569-3381) has a program to assist with providing battery operated detectors.

One of the department's oldest thermal imaging cameras failed during the recent structure fire. It replaced it with a 2020 demo unit from Northeast Emergency Apparatus for $5,800. Thompson said it is an MSA evolution 6000 Plus. Four years remain on the five-year warranty. The last unit it purchased cost over $12,000, so he declared it a good deal.

Thompson also reported on expenditures for repairs. Engine One was at Coastal Truck in Portsmouth for a full alignment on Dec. 2, which cost $419.55, coming in under the $1,500 estimate.

Car 1, which he said went into reduced power mode after the structure fire in North Country Village, had its throttle body replaced at Ed's Auto Repair on Dec. 15, for $412.58.

The department received an estimate of $7,183.39 for repairs to Boat 1, which could be delayed to the fall of this year, an expense that has not been budgeted. Selectman Bill Marcussen made a successful motion to encumber that amount to cover the repairs to the Fire Boat, preferably to be performed while the boat is out for the winter.

Also, the fire department's server has not yet been replaced this year, due to circumstances beyond its control. Thompson commented that the estimates from the town's previous IT company are thousands of dollars lower than those of the temporary company and the new IT company that the town has chosen.

Lexipol has been contracted for $2,500 (used from the emergency grants section) to complete an AFG grant for portable radios that are scheduled to be replaced in 2021 for $120,000. If the grant application is successful that amount could be reimbursed said Thompson.

Tuftonboro Fire Rescue was joined by the Moultonborough, West Ossipee and Alton Fire Rescue departments on Dec. 12 at Pier 19 for a joint training with the airboats and hovercraft.

Thompson concluded his presentation with recommendations for Patrick Runnals and Mathew Fuller to join the roster. Both have fire service relatives in their families, he noted. Runnals would start out in the cadet program until he turns 18 this year.

Year to date statistics: 532 calls and special details and 88 inspections.

Town of Brookfield
Martin Lord Osman
Town of Brookfield
Varney Smith
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