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Mobile home fire goes to second alarm because of extenuating circumstances

Lake Murray, SC (Paul Kirby) – A mobile home fire on Jake’s Landing Road near the Lake Murray dam went to a second alarm early Tuesday because of its location and wind driving the fire from the lake. Many of the second alarm trucks and personnel were quickly reassigned to standby stations, but the opportunity for a fire storm to rip across the peninsula packed with weekend homes was very real.

Jake’s Landing Road is a one-way-in, one-way-out peninsula packed with closely spaced mobile homes, campers, and small cabins. Most either face the windward side of Lake Murray’s “Big Water,” or a cove on the opposite side where the wind is often calmed by tall trees. Many of these have been there for decades. Some are weekend retreats, while others now have permanent residents. It’s beautiful and quiet, except during an emergency!

In an emergency, the roads are single lane and unimproved. There’s a split at one point and the older homes and campers are sandwiched together with very little space in between. Some wind blows all the time, and even during a fire, it can be difficult to get a fire truck to the lake’s bank to provide water.There are no fire hydrants out on the peninsula.

Lexington County’s Fire Service and the Irmo Fire District’s North Lake Station both went on the first alarm. The officer on North Lake’s truck reported heavy smoke while crossing the dam. When the first Lexington County battalion chief arrived, he reported a fully involved, wind driven mobile home fire that had already began spreading to a second. Conditions seemed right for the fire to begin jumping from home to home taking out an entire row!

The first fire engine arrived just in time to stop this from becoming a fire storm. Long lays of large supply hoses had to be dropped because of the one lane situation. More firefighters began arriving and advancing lines to bring the fire under control. The teams worked together to ensure the fire was completely out.

Teams with equipment were still on scene after 5:30 a.m. Tuesday morning. Once they are finished, those trucks will probably have to be backed out because of the narrow conditions. It will be daylight before the exact damages are assessed. At least one of the homes was occupied and those people will be displaced.

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