Smoke detectors awaken Breck residents to fire
October 13, 2006
BRECKENRIDGE A few Breckenridge residents avoided a tragedy Wednesday afternoon when they noticed light smoke in their unit, opened up the closet door closest to the smoke detector and saw flames coming out of the wall.The Red, White & Blue Fire District was called at 4 p.m. Wednesday afternoon to an apartment fire at Now Colorado, Unit E-2. Occupants inside the unit called 911 when their smoke detector activated and awoke them, according to a press release by Capt. Kim Scott.Were very happy that the occupants had working smoke detectors in their unit to awaken them and alert them to the fire, said Scott. Because of that, the occupants exited safely and were able to call 9-1-1 immediately, preventing further risk to other occupants and damage to the building.”According to Scott:One of the occupants grabbed a fire extinguisher while the other one called 911. After the flames were extinguished, the occupants heard crackling in the walls and observed that the wall was glowing red. The occupants then exited the unit.The firefighters entered the unit and pulled away the drywall in the closet and extinguished the fire. Fire crews were sent in to the units above and below E-2 to check for fire extension and smoke. Breckenridge Police assisted with building evacuation and traffic control. As a precaution, Red, White & Blue issued a non-use requirement for all fireplaces in all of the buildings until each fireplace is inspected and cleaned to ensure that it is in proper working condition. Glen Morgan, the chief building inspector for Breckenridge, was called in to assist with fire investigation, after investigators found charred floor joists. He confirmed the building was structurally sound.The Now Colorado Homeowners Association was contacted and is working to get all of the fireplaces inspected and able to be used again.Occupants in two units were displaced for the night to allow the smoke to clear and minor damage repaired. American Red Cross assisted them in securing lodging.Damage is estimated to be approximately $1,500. Red, White & Blue reminds citizens to have their chimneys and fireplaces inspected once a year and cleaned as needed based on usage.