A fire called in to the Escalon Fire Department about 9:45 a.m. Monday, Jan. 30 caused extensive damage to the residence in the 2100 block of Franklin, and resulted in the loss of both a pet dog and cat, succumbing to smoke inside the home.
Escalon Consolidated Fire Protection District Chief Rick Mello said the attack on the home was a coordinated effort, involving multiple fire agencies in addition to Escalon police and public works departments, Escalon ambulance and more.
“It was a passerby who saw smoke coming from the residence, he went and knocked on the door but no one answered, he went to a neighbor’s and knocked on their door, they called 9-1-1.” Mello said.
The fire was at 2106 Franklin, where longtime Escalon resident Sharie Davis lived with her pets. She was not home at the time, said Mello, but returned once she was notified of the fire and was evaluated there by medical personnel due to the trauma of the situation.
“We got on scene and we had Escalon Police Department officers, Sgt. Milt Medeiros and Officer Price on scene, they had tried to get in to rescue the animals but were unable to because the home was fully charged with smoke,” explained Mello. “We also had Public Works on scene, trying to knock down some flames with a garden hose.”
Fire crews were also concerned with a home directly to the north of the Davis residence, which was getting inundated with smoke, but a resident there was found to be secure and did not have to be evacuated.
“We called for an engine from Ripon and one from Stanislaus Consolidated to come to the scene and we had Farmington do station coverage,” said Mello. “We made an attack toward the rear of the residence; we had the fire under control within about 30 minutes of being on the scene.”
Mello said the fire originated in the kitchen and that area had heavy fire, smoke and water damage. A living room and bedroom area escaped the brunt of the fire and he also said roughly 40 percent of the belongings in the home were salvaged by firefighters.
“It was, quite honestly, one of the best incidents in terms of teamwork,” Mello said of the quick and coordinated response.
Neighbors also came to help comfort the homeowner and Red Cross assistance was offered but declined.
“She said she was going to stay with her sister,” Mello noted of Davis.
Local veterinarian Dr. Hagan’s office was called in to assist with removal of the perished pets.
The roughly 1,000-square foot home on Franklin was situated between Coley and Main streets and Mello said Davis was the only occupant of the home.
“We had the area of origin in the kitchen, not sure exactly what in terms of appliances or electrical in the kitchen but that is where it started,” added Mello. “We had the Ripon engine, the Consolidated engine on scene in a timely manner, our off duty reserves and volunteers came back in, PG&E arrived on scene even before the Ripon engine did and secured the power … from public works to the police department, to fire and medical personnel and just the cooperation from the neighborhood, it was a good response.”
Fire crews were back in service about 12:45 p.m., said Mello.