On Sunday, December 31, 2023, Deputy State Fire Marshal Valles responded to assist firefighters and the St. Mary’s Sheriff’s Deputies at a structure fire located in the 40000 block of Duke Road in Mechanicsville, St. Mary’s County. DFM Valles spoke with the incident commander from the Mechanicsville Volunteer Fire Department who advised that a plastic tote full of cleaning supplies and miscellaneous household items was set on fire inside the residence. Firefighters removed the tote to the front yard and conducted overhaul operations inside the room to ensure the fire was out. Overhaul operations including breaching the drywall to ensure the fire did not extend to the concealed spaces behind the walls and ceiling. Firefighters identified the homeowner as Canter, and reported that the owner was able to control the fire prior to their arrival. DFM Valles noted a partially melted grey plastic tote with drawers located outside on the front lawn. An origin and cause examination revealed the fire originated in a back bedroom. DFM Valles noted heat and soot damage to drywall on the walls and ceiling, flooring, and window curtains along the back wall of the room. Mild smoke and heat damage was noted in the hall […]
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