By DON FLETCHER
News Staff Writer
Atmore firefighters spent just over an hour gaining control of a Friday (July 3) evening fire that destroyed an abandoned mobile home and car and threatened several homes off Virginia Drive.
“It was an old, abandoned trailer that was empty,” said Fire Chief Ron Peebles of the structure, which was reported burning at 6:24 p.m. “And the car had been setting there forever. Both the trailer and the car were total losses. The biggest problem was that it was threatening several nearby structures.”
A collapsed tin roof that held heat and flames beneath it was the main reason firemen remained at the scene until 7:32 p.m. The firefighting effort ultimately involved three fire engines and about 2,500 gallons of water.
“We pumped all of the water out of the first truck, and that was 500 gallons,” said Head Capt. Daniel Love from the fire site. “We had to call another truck, and we used all 1,000 gallons it held, then we called a third truck that also held 1,000 gallons.”
Because of the labor-intensive effort, all off-duty and volunteer firefighters were called in to man vacated AFD stations. The cause of the blaze had not been determined as midweek approached.
The local fire department was dispatched several other times just before and during the Fourth of July weekend, including at least two false alarms, a cooking mishap and a fireworks-sparked brush fire.
An AFD unit was sent to a Marshall Drive residence Thursday afternoon, where reports were that the home’s stove was afire. It turned out that the stove was not on fire, but a container of food left on it was. Firemen extinguished the burning food, then returned to their station.
The brush fire occurred Sunday, July 5, long after most Independence Day celebrations had ended.
Fire reports show that an East Sunset Drive resident was burning trash when several “unused fireworks went off and started a grass fire.” The flames were out within 14 minutes, reports show.