2/15/2013 two Bryan, Texas firefighters died while fighting a fire at the Knights of Columbus Hall on Groesbeck Street. “At approximately 11:20 p.m. a passerby reported a structure fire in a in Bryan; the hall was not occupied at the time of the fire discovery. Bryan firefighters responded and initiated interior firefighting operations. During interior operations, one firefighter became separated from his crew and radioed for help. Three firefighters, who were assigned to the Rapid Intervention Team, attempted the rescue the missing firefighter. The fire progressed to flashover conditions and the fire enveloped the firefighters, causing fatal injuries to two of the firefighters.”
2/15/2004 two Wood River, Nebraska firefighters died at a structure fire in a single-story residence. “Upon their arrival on the scene, firefighters discovered a working fire and received reports of a trapped occupant. The two firefighters advanced an attack line into the residence for search and rescue and fire control. During the search, the firefighters entered a room that had been added to the home. Without warning, the roof of the addition collapsed on the firefighters in a pancake-type collapse. Both firefighters were trapped in the collapse that occurred 17 minutes after they arrived on-scene. Firefighters were unable to see either firefighter under the collapsed roof, but PASS device alarms could be heard. The collapse was caused by multiple factors including a buildup of ice on the roof of the addition, an un-sloped roof on the addition, rusted fasteners used to attach the addition to the original structure, poor construction practices, and fire exposure. The occupant who was trapped in the structure died of smoke inhalation. The deceased occupant had been on oxygen for a medical condition, and the presence of supplemental oxygen supplies in the home was thought to have contributed to the intensity of the fire.”
2/15/1999 the Sansom Church fire in Lake Worth, TX, an incendiary fire killed three firefighters on Roberts Cut Off Road near Cowden Street just before 11:00 a.m. A fire had started in a small 6-by-6-foot outbuilding and extended into the church from a strong approximately 30 mile-per-hour wind. Five firefighters entered church and began interior operations and pulling ceiling, while ventilation operations were started on the roof. Approximately 18 minutes after the initial call a large portion of the truss roof collapsed throwing one firefighter into the burning building and trapping the five firefighters inside the building, three were able to escape. “The building became fully involved within minutes and the entire fire ground operation went to the defensive mode.” “Unfortunately, a second PAR (count) showed that three firefighters were still missing. At this point, the building was too well involved for firefighters to enter, so they directed master streams into the building to knock down the flames. When this had been done, crews made a hole in the exterior wall where they thought the missing firefighters were. Two firefighters were found near this hole, and the third was found about 20 feet away. All three firefighters were removed from the building.”
2/15/1989 a Johnstown, Pennsylvania firefighter “died when he came in contact with high tension electrical lines and was electrocuted. His air bottle came in contact with wires when he was climbing the ladder truck to rescue people from a burning apartment building.”
2/15/1953 a Miami, Florida firefighter died at a fire in an automotive paint and body shop located at 1864 SW 8th Street. Several other firefighters and bystanders were treated and transported. He collapsed while aiding overhaul (cleanup) operations after the fire was put out.
2/15/1953 an Atlanta, GA firefighter died “while directing operations at the multiple alarm at Seaboard Air Line Railroad Depot, the fire beneath the Spring Street viaduct, several firefighters were caught under a collapsed wall. All of them received severe injuries, one died instantly for the injuries he sustained.”
2/15/1952 a Norwich, CT firefighter died from the injuries he sustained after having fallen from an aerial ladder while operating at a fire.
2/15/1952 an Ames, Iowa firefighter died after being coming trapped in a fire in a downtown print shop
2/15/1939 a Leavenworth, KS firefighter “died from the injuries he sustained after a wall had collapsed, while operating a fire that destroyed a garage and damaged three residences. The fire was intentionally started by a 25-year-old man who stated he just wanted the satisfaction of starting a fire, and had no intention of harming anyone or damaging any property. A firefighter would also die a day later from the injuries he sustained in the collapse.”
2/15/1910 a Lewiston, Maine firefighter “died of the injuries he sustained when he was thrown from a ladder during a building collapse at Main and Middle Street on February 8, 1910.”
2/15/1909 a Milwaukee, Wisconsin firefighter “died of a broken back and crushing injuries he sustained two days earlier at the John- Manville fire when a wall collapsed.”
2/15/2012 a rapidly developing fire started by an inmate in an overcrowded prison in Comayagua Honduras left 356 prisoners dead; most locked in their cells as rescuers desperately searched for keys.
2/15/1967 an ammunition depot explosion and fire in Texarkana, TX killed eleven and injured fourteen after a 105mm shell blew up while workers loaded it with high explosive around at 10:30 p.m. and continued to burn fiercely until controlled about 12:15 a.m.
2/15/1927 an explosion and fire in the San Pedro, CA high school chemistry classroom injured fifteen students and two teachers.
2/15/1917 the three-story brick high school erected in 1888 in Athens, PA was destroyed by fire that started in a wastepaper box in the basement; fire-fighting operations were handicapped by frozen hydrants.
2/15/1906 a nitro glycerin explosion killed two workmen at the Hercules Torpedo Company in Geneva, Indiana who were engaged in unloading 1,500 quarts of nitro glycerin from a wagon. The blast created a hole in the ground 15 feet deep and 25 feet in diameter.
2/151894 a Oneonta, NY state Normal School was destroyed by fire. The brick normal school was opened in the fall of 1889 and had “350 normal students and 150 intermediate students” enrolled.
2/15/1858 a mine accident and fire killed two and devastated the mine in Tamaqua, PA.
2/15/1979 the first U.S. graduate Fire Protection Engineering program was started at Worcester Polytechnic Institute. A FPE uses science and technology to protect people & property from destructive fires by analyzing buildings usage, how fires start & grow, and effects of fire and smoke on people, buildings.
2/15/1898 an explosion of unknown origin sank the battleship USS Maine in Cuba’s Havana harbor, that killed 260 and lead to the outbreak of the Spanish-American War. “Agitated by the “yellow press” and American imperialists, demanded firm action. “Remember the Maine, to hell with Spain!” was the cry. On April 11, 1898, McKinley asked the Congress for permission to use force in Cuba.” “In 1976, a team of American naval investigators concluded that the Maine explosion was likely caused by a fire that ignited its ammunition stocks, not by a Spanish mine or act of sabotage.”