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Springs House a Total Loss After Blaze

Thu, 11/16/2023 - 15:44
Smoke was visible in the distance down a long, flag-lot style driveway on Wednesday.
Carissa Katz

Three fire departments battled a blaze on the afternoon of Nov. 15 that destroyed a house on Springs-Fireplace Road near Harrison Avenue in Springs. The house had been unoccupied but for a number of pets, which are thought to have died in the fire.

According to Springs Fire Department Chief Tim Weber, the call came in at 2:48 p.m. as a "chief's investigation" — indicating a level of uncertainty over the type of incident — at a different address, but while he was on his way there, dispatchers switched the call to a working structure fire.

The house, a one-story structure with a basement at the end of a flag-lot driveway, "was fully involved" by that time, Chief Weber said last Thursday afternoon.

Thomas Baker, an assistant East Hampton Town fire marshal who was a Springs volunteer firefighter himself for 36 years, described multiple challenges associated with the property.

"The biggest complication was the length of the driveway and the fact that it was narrow," Mr. Baker, who was at the scene in his capacity as a town official, said last Thursday. "The Fire Department could stack in three fire trucks and not much more in order to do their job. The confining, close quarters made it difficult."

A Springs engine crew was assisted by an engine and a tanker from the East Hampton Fire Department. The Amagansett Fire Department sent a rapid-intervention team, while the Sag Harbor department stood by at Springs headquarters.

Excavating equipment was brought in to help firefighters find and extinguish pockets of flames, Chief Weber said.

"There was a lot of content in the house, so the excavator helped pull everything out so we could get the fire out."

The scene was deemed cleared shortly before 6 p.m., but about seven hours later, according to a town police report, dispatchers received a call that "the remaining portion of the home had rekindled." Springs firefighters were dispatched again, and they extinguished the flames.

The town fire marshal's office is still investigating the cause.

This story has been updated since it was first published.

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