photos by Penhold Fire Department

UPDATE: Penhold crews respond to mobile home fires

Portable open flame heater most likely the cause of the fire, officials say

On Feb. 12th at shortly after 4 p.m. Penhold fire crews were dispatched to two mobile homes on fire in the Penhold Estates mobile home park.

Both units were fully involved when crews arrived. There were no civilian injuries. One Penhold firefighter suffered a torn muscle from a fall and was transported to hospital and later released to return home.

The fire started in unit 20 in a 1975 manufactured home and spread to unit 21, a 1974 manufactured home.

There was no natural gas service to the originating unit, and there were several portable open flame heaters in that unit of which at least one was in operation at the time of the origin, and was most likely the cause of the fire.

Both units had been renovated many times over the years which created many voids and dead spaces hampering the ability of firefighters to reach some of the deep seated hot spots.

Both units are a total loss.

Unfortunately neither owners had insurance at the time of the fire. There were two adults and a dog living in each unit. The occupants of the originating unit were outside at the time and noticed heavy smoke coming from the front door. None of the occupants and pets were injured.

Penhold Fire Chief Jim Pendergast said, “The cold caused some problems for our firefighters with equipment freezing our hoses, breathing apparatus, and it was difficult to get at some areas of the fire because of the structural integrity of the buildings and the contents made entry extremely hard.

“The firefighters did an outstanding job to make sure the fire did not spread to several immediately adjacent units.”

There is no damage estimate or cause determined at this time. Seven fire units from Penhold and two fire units from Innisfail responded.

Penhold fire crews remained on scene until the early hours of Tuesday.

Penhold firefighters wish to express their sympathy to both homeowners in the tragic loss of the homes.

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