On Dec. 23, 2017 at 2:17 a.m., Superior Fire was paged out for a report of a possible structure fire in the area of Lobb and Main. The on duty crew responded in an engine and was followed by the tender and second engine a few minutes later with personnel responding from home.
The first engine arrived to find a vacant home on Lobb fully engulfed in flames with roof and wall collapse, indicating it had been burning for a time before it was called in. The intense heat and flames had spread to neighboring properties. An immediate defensive fire attack was administered on the property to the north, properties to the west, and property to the south with hose lines and a deck gun utilized. Fire on a wooden fence and section of a yard on the property to the west was extinguished as well as the south wall on the house to the north. The fire had spread into the roof eaves of the house to the south with electrical lines sparking overhead.
While crews attacked that section with a hidden attic fire bellowing inside, fire crews had to stop fire attack operations and perform search and rescue operations to the homeowner, who had ran inside the house against police orders. He was discovered near the back of the house with smoke inhalation and was removed from the structure and seen by AMR ambulance. He was treated and released on scene. The house became engulfed in flames with a heavy fuel load inside only minutes later with fire attack strategy on suppressing the flames on the house and protecting the large commercial building four feet away.
Due to the intensity of the fire, close proximity of residential and commercial buildings, and windy conditions, additional resources responded to include Queen Valley Fire District, Tri-City Fire District, and Superstation Medical and Fire. Heavy fuel load in one of the structures required several hours of defensive attack and mop up, to include the utilization of an elevated water stream. There was just one reported smoke inhalation victim who was treated and released on scene, however, property loss of a vacant house and a family home. The commercial buildings were saved along with some neighboring residential properties.
The fire on the original structure is deemed suspicious and arson has not been ruled out. A parallel fire and criminal investigation is underway for this fire as well as recent past fires. Superior Fire Department reminds all citizens to be cautious with electrical wiring and heaters around this time of year, as well as to report any suspicious activity prior to and during a fire.
Relief efforts are underway for the Lott family who lost everything in the fire. You can drop relief items off at Porter’s Cafe or the Saint Mary’s Center. Chaplain VanGorp is aiding in the coordination of relief efforts. He can be reached at: 520-827-0988.