On 9/21/1904 four Denver, Colorado firefighters “were killed from inhaling nitric acid fumes at the Denver Post after nitric acid spilled and fire on ensued on September 20, 1904. A 16-gallon container of nitric acid burst open in the etching room of the Denver Post. A fire ensued which was easily extinguished by the firefighters, who inhaled the fumes while fighting the fire. Besides the four firefighters killed, more than a dozen other firefighters were hospitalized with various stages of respiratory distress.
On 9/21/1943 three Denver, Colorado firefighters died at a railroad tunnel fire. “A small brush fire ignited timbers in Tunnel Number 10 of the Moffat Tunnel Rail Line, near Rollinsville, Colorado. The tunnel is a 1600′ bore located approximately 27 miles west of Denver, with no road access to the area. The Denver & Salt Lake Railroad contacted the Fire Chief and requested assistance in extinguishing the blaze. The Chief knew the importance of this rail line route and agreed to send a crew. Engine 4, one of the department’s newest, was loaded onto a flat car in Denver and along with 3 rail cars full of water and they departed for the fire. Late that night they arrived at the tunnel. Three firefighters went into the tunnel to fight the blaze. One firefighter later stumbled out of the tunnel, his gas mask not working properly. A firefighter grabbed a mask and rushed into the tunnel to help the two firefighters. Winds shifted, and the tunnel became a blazing inferno, resulting in a cave-in. The body of one firefighter was recovered 100 yards inside the tunnel the next day. The body of the second firefighter would not be recovered until November 21st, and the third firefighter was recovered on November 24th, both deep inside the tunnel.”
On 9/21/1944 three Magnolia, Arkansas firefighters “were killed in a fire at an oil storage tank in the Macedonia area.”
On 9/21/1946 a Toronto, Ontario, Canada firefighter “died from burn injuries he received in a violent explosion of a shed at the Canadian National Railway on Mill and Cherry Streets. Three other firefighters were rushed to the hospital with burns, but would survive.”
On 9/21/1972 two Elkhart, Indiana firefighters died at a fire at Richmond Street and Virginia Avenue. “A fire broke out at Holdeman’s Supplies and the smoke could be seen for miles. Multiple attempts had been made to steal fuel from a gas tank on the property and a blaze ignited underneath. Three firefighters jumped off the truck and began putting water on the fire while the engineer drove a few yards down to keep the engine at a safe distance. As he drove away, the fuel tank exploded. Some of the men fled up a nearby hill. Others caught fire and tried to extinguish the flames that engulfed their bodies. Eight of the eleven firefighters present that day were severely burned. Two died from their injuries.”
On 9/21/1978 a Springfield, Oregon firefighter died “while operating at a fire on the second floor of DJ’s Market on Main Street. He died of smoke inhalation and carbon monoxide poisoning when he became confused and got separated from his company as they were evacuating the building due to a ceiling collapse. He complained of being dizzy while changing to his third air bottle but refused to remain outside. His body was found with his mask still on and his coat pulled over his head.”
On 9/21/1991 a Sherwood, North Dakota firefighter was severely burned on September 15, 1991, “when there was a wind shift at an oil storage tank fire. Six other firefighters were injured. Firefighters were trying to circle the fire when the wind shifted, they apparently became disoriented in the smoke. Burning oil from one tank sprayed the town’s only fire truck. One tank was nearly empty and the other held about 12,000 gallons of oil that were lost in the fire. One firefighter died on 9/20 and a second passed on 9/21 of the injuries they sustained days earlier at the fire.”
On 9/21/2009 a Port Arthur, Texas apartment fire claimed the lives of a 43-year-old man, his 45-year-old wife, her 18-year-old son, and a 67-year-old woman.
On 9/21/2008 the Wuwang Club fire in Shenzhen, People’s Republic of China killed forty-three people and injured fifty-one when a fire broke out just before midnight at the packed “King of the Dancers Club.” The nightclub was operating without a license and was not built to code. The fire started from fireworks that ignited the ceiling during a floorshow, there was one unmarked exit, and the thirteen people responsible for the management of the club were arrested.
On 9/21/1924 four miners died in a carbon-fueled mine explosion near Rains, Utah.
On 9/21/1921 the Badische Anilin chemical plant explosion and fire killed about 1,000 in Oppau, now part of Ludwigshafen, Germany when a tower silo storing 4,500 tons of a mixture of ammonium sulfate and ammonium nitrate fertilizer exploded at a BASF plant. The explosion was estimated to be equivalent to about 1–2 kilotons of TNT; almost 80 percent of all buildings in Oppau were destroyed, leaving 6,500 homeless; and created a crater 295’ by 410’ and 62’ deep.
On 9/21/1891 in Rolla, Missouri a furniture store was destroyed by a fire that damages several other stores.
On 9/21/1882 a fire drill caused panic in New York, New York. Several children were injured in a school on Greenwich Avenue during a panic caused by a fire alarm being given by mistake.
On 9/21/1876 the Georgetown, Kentucky Courthouse and eight business buildings burned after a fire was discovered in the cellar of the drugstore.
On 9/21/1874 in Helena, Montana four incendiary fires damaged several downtown buildings.
On 9/21/1938 the New England Hurricane (or Great New England Hurricane or Long Island Express or simply The Great Hurricane of 1938) was the first major storm to strike the area since 1869 and one of the most powerful hurricanes in New England history was estimated to have killed between 682 and 800 people and destroyed over 57,000 homes.