Dothan Fire Department working to determine cause of Fencepost Lane fire

Local News

DOTHAN, Ala. (WDHN) — The Dothan Fire Department fought a fully involved house fire on fence post lane in the Woodlands Sunday night.

The fire grew to the point where it caused parts of the building to collapse.

“(We) went into what we describe as a defensive operation as they were hearing things begin to collapse inside the home,” Dothan Fire Department Deputy Chief Chris Etheredge said. “We were able to knock the fire down to the point where we could get in, and begin an initial search, initially on the uninvolved portion on the home and then over toward the involved portion of the home.”

Houston County Coroner Robert Byrd was at the scene of the fire as firefighters located the occupant of the home who was identified as 62-year-old Nathaniel Allen Newsome.

“No other injuries at the fire,” Etheredge said. “The men and women of the Dothan Fire Department did a tremendous job considering what they were facing with a heavy amount of fire involvement. The fire had progressed to such a point prior to our notification that it was very difficult to bring under control.”

Investigators with DFD were on scene Monday working to determine the cause of the fire.

“Unfortunately, prior to our arrival, the fire was able to get into the overhead or the attic space and when it does that it runs the entire length of the home causing significant damage,” Etheredge said. “More importantly, it causes a more significant collapse hazard because those rafters and trusses are burning from the top side above our heads.”

Etheredge said that after these types of fire they always wonder if they could have done something different on an education standpoint.

They often say the best fire they respond to is the one they’ve prevented. So when they have a fatality in the city, they we take it very personal.

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