There were reports of someone trapped in the house found to be three stories in the front, and five stories in the rear.
“Exactly 46 seconds after the first engine arrived, we had the line up on the third floor with water on the fire. We flowed water nonstop for three minutes before having to evacuate abandoning hose line and our positions,” according to a post on the Catskill Fire Company’s Facebook page.
Firefighters were told to evacuate after an officer noticed the fire on the second floor was growing rapidly, and may block their egress.
Four made it down the stairs, and one bailed out a second-floor window to a porch roof. Within 15 seconds, all were out of the structure.
“Just as he made the roof and the Hudson chief and Catskill members exited, a loud explosion rocked the home and was heard and felt thru the village.”
It was later determined there were oxygen tanks stored in the home.
“If not for the experience of the Hudson chief knowing he had to watch the stairwell for egress and sound the alarm this may have turned horrific fast,” the firefighters said in the post.
On Wednesday night, the crew involved met to watch a helmet cam of the incident.
“A lot of what we heard and saw on video, some of us do not even remember saying or doing. It was training kicked in at hi speed…”
The firefighters say it was that constant practice of tactical skills that saved them adding that it was a “very sobering four minutes we all kind of tried and wrapped our heads around.”