Malfunctioning HVAC system causes structure fire response

On Tuesday, September 1st, 2020, shortly after 8:30 pm, the Turlock Fire Department received a call of a working structure fire in the 1100 block of Wickel St. The Turlock Fire Department responded with Battalion 4, Engine 31, Squad 32, and Engine 34. Additionally, as part of a resource sharing agreement, the Ceres Fire Department responded with Battalion 3 and Engine 15. Turlock Irrigation District, Pacific Gas and Electric, and American Medical Response were also dispatched. Engine 34 arrived on scene about 5 minutes later. Upon their arrival, Captain 34 reported nothing visible on the outside and the occupants of the residence evacuating. Captain 34 assumed Wickel command and put Engine 34 in the investigation mode.

Battalion 4 and Engine 33 arrived on scene shortly after. When Battalion 4 arrived on scene, he assumed command from Captain 34 and setup a command post on the front left side of the residence. Due to nothing showing, Engine 31 and Squad 32 were told to level one stage off of Oxford Ave until it was decided whether they were needed or not. After a short investigation, it was determined that the culprit was a malfunctioning HVAC system.

When this was determined, all staged and incoming resources (utilities and ambulance) were cancelled. The remaining units on scene assisted the residents with smoke removal from their residence. Command was terminated around 9:20 pm, and all fire units went clear and available.

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