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Accident Report Detail

Accident: 201881018 - One Fire Fighter Killed, Eight Injured In Fire

Accident: 201881018 -- Report ID: 0253630 -- Event Date: 05/05/1997
InspectionOpen DateSICEstablishment Name
12448820605/08/19979224Kenmore Vill Fd Accident 1997
At approximately 5:07 p.m. on May 5, 1997, Employees #1 through #9, all firemen, were alerted of a fire at the Caton-Hendler Paint Company, Kenmore, NY, which sold paints and related items. It was a one-story retail building, 112 ft by 100 ft, with a non-fireproof steel frame, masonry block walls, a flat roof, and built-up composition. The first alarm was sounded at 5:07 p.m., indicating there was smoke in the building's warehouse. The second alarm was sounded at 5:28 p.m., and the third given at 5:45 p.m. The weather was cloudy and 64 degrees, with winds from the south at 20 mph. When the Chief arrived, smoke was coming out of the garage door on one side of the building. Several firemen went a short distance into the building and then retreated, stating that there was extensive smoke and fire above their heads. At the same time, two firefighters were cutting a hole in a large overhead door on that same side of the building. There was a major explosion and several firefighters were struck by debris and knocked to the ground when a block wall collapsed. Employee #1 was struck by bricks and a steel beam landed on his back, fracturing his pelvis and jaw; he died as a result of his injuries on May 24, 1997. Employee #2 sustained a broken wrist and fractured vertebrae, and was placed in a body cast. Employee #3 suffered a broken leg and Employee #4 injured his left foot; both were hospitalized. Employee #5 suffered body contusions and Employee #6 sustained left leg and shoulder injuries. Employees #7 and #8, who were blown clear of explosion; Employee #7 injured his right elbow and knee and Employee #8 suffered left shoulder and arm injuries. Employee #9 lacerated his finger. Employees #5 through #9 were not hospitalized. Paramedics pulled the injured to safety, while the firefighters began an external attack on the blaze. The flames and smoke seemed to come from a storage area, but this could not be documented because of the use of heavy equipment during the last stage of the fire to knock down walls and turn over material to be sure that the fire was out. All firefighters were using the required fire fighting equipment. At this time, there was no report on how or where the fire started.
Keywords: firefighter, fracture, wall, collapse, warehouse, fire, explosion, pelvis, struck by, flying object
Employee # Inspection Age Sex Degree Nature Occupation
1 124488206 Non Hospitalized injury Bruise/Contus/Abras Firefighting occupations
2 124488206 Non Hospitalized injury Bruise/Contus/Abras Firefighting occupations
3 124488206 Non Hospitalized injury Bruise/Contus/Abras Firefighting occupations
4 124488206 Non Hospitalized injury Bruise/Contus/Abras Firefighting occupations
5 124488206 Fatality Fracture Firefighting occupations
6 124488206 Hospitalized injury Fracture Firefighting occupations
7 124488206 Hospitalized injury Fracture Firefighting occupations
8 124488206 Hospitalized injury Fracture Firefighting occupations
9 124488206 Non Hospitalized injury Bruise/Contus/Abras Firefighting occupations

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