Family displaced in fire Tuesday


By Staff Report

A trailer fire Tuesday morning has displaced a family of four and killed their beloved pets.

While first responders arrived within minutes, the home was already too far gone to be saved, now deemed a total loss.

According to Zanesville Assistant Fire Chief Doug Hobson, his department first received notice of the blaze along Green Street at 10:56 a.m.

Many city residents reported seeing the dark smoke from various viewpoints around town, billowing up to the clouds.

The first fire crew arrived on the scene within a minute of being dispatched. Hobson said that’s a standard response time.

“Our ISO ratings, which impact local insurance rates, require that we arrive within three minutes,” Hobson explained. “That’s something we strive for, the professionalism of the Zanesville Fire Department, being on scene within those three minutes. Being able to get water on and able to save someone, that’s a great asset to the city.”

Within a few additional minutes, multiple city crews, a crew from Washington Township and three squads also arrived.

Unfortunately, the structure was already too far gone to be saved, Hobson said.

Regardless, crews began setting up hoses and spraying water on the trailer. Other crew members connected their trucks to nearby fire hydrants to ensure additional adequate water supply.

Due to the intense heat of the fire, Hobson explained, the electric line melted away from the house and began sparking and flopping around, concealed by the dark smoke.

Thanks to a service provided by AEP Ohio, before the first unit even arrived on scene, the Zanesville Dispatch Center notified the provider and electricity was cut to the home. When the cable melted, the live wire connected to the pole created a danger once more.

“It makes it very dangerous when you have an electric line dancing around,” said Hobson. “We notified our crews, but you have to be very careful to not get lost in the smoke and to touch the wire.”

Many local residents reported hearing an explosion and zapping noises, which was most likely due to the live electric line.

Only one person was home at the time of the fire, a young teen. In an attempted to get his dogs out of the residence, he suffered minor injuries to his hands. He was treated on scene.

In total, four individuals were displaced by the blaze, an adult and three young teens. Two adult dogs and eight puppies died.

Red Cross has been called to assist the family. According to Hobson, they will begin to photograph the scene and conducted interviews. The cause of the fire has not yet been determined.

Due to the condition of the trailer, a city-owned backhoe was called in to help pull away parts of the structure as it was too damaged for firefighters to enter and combat hot spots that remained.

Homeless Hands of Zanesville is collecting money and items for the family. For more information, check out their Facebook post.