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STUBBORN STUMP DUMP FIRE
BLACKSMITH SHOP ROAD
| A stubborn deep seated fire in a
large stump dump between Blacksmith Shop Road and Thomas B Landers
Road in Falmouth kept fire crews and heavy equipment operators busy
for nearly 2 weeks.
The fire involved an area approximately 2 acres in size and somewhere near 30 feet deep. The fire created smokey conditions that blanketed the neighborhood at times. Flames from the fire reached nearly 70 feet at times. The fire burned through warm weather, freezing weather, heavy rains, snow, winds and a mixture of all of the above.
A hose line was stretched through the woods to a hydrant to supply three pumpers operating at the incident. At times the Falmouth aerial ladder and a Tower from Mashpee also operated elevated streams. Despite the use of master streams and a variety of handlines, flowing over 1000 gpm for hours upon hours, flowing more than an estimated million gallons of water, the stubborn fire continued to burn.
Heavy equipment operators from several companies assisted on scene, pulling apart the pile and digging deep to reach and expose the fire so fire crews could wet it down. Fire crews coordinated their work with the equipment operators to provide safety as well as extinguishment, while trying to avoid making muddy conditions that caused difficulty for the bull dozers.
Many hours and days of hard work have made good progress finally (by Nov 30). Falmouth Fire Department was assisted by other departments including Mashpee, MMR, Bourne, and the Red Cross during the weeks of firefighting.
The fire is believed to have been caused by spontaneous combustion of the material under ground.
These photos do not show the full extent of the fire, but only a glimpse towards the end of the operation.