Old technique is used to extinguish blaze

ROCK CAVE — The old-fashioned technique commonly referred to as the bucket brigade, which was important in firefighting before the advent of hand-pumped fire engines whereby firefighters would pass buckets to each other to extinguish a blaze, was used this week by two passersbys to extinguish a fire in southern Upshur County before firefighters arrived on scene.

At approximately 12:31 p.m. Tuesday afternoon, the Upshur County Communications Center dispatched three southern Upshur volunteer fire departments, along with the Pickens and Walkersville volunteer fire departments to 228 Gaines Road in Rock Cave in reference to a structure fire involving reportedly a large garage.

First arriving firefighters on scene from the Banks District Volunteer Fire Department discovered that the fire had been quickly extinguished by two passerby who spotted the fire as they drove past the garage and worked together quickly to quench the flames. Timothy Higgins told firefighters he was driving home along the Gaines Road and noticed thick black smoke coming from the side of a garage and that it was on fire.

He, along with another person who had stopped to help him, ran to the garage looking for anything they could use to try to put the fire out. Higgins stated they found several buckets, and they gathered buckets of water from a stream directly behind the garage to douse the flames. They made approximately 10 trips to the stream for water.

The fire, which had started inside the garage at a window opening through which the stove pipe from a wood burner was vented through a section of particle board, resulted in only light damage.

The property owner, Robert Bush, was not home at the time of the fire.

“Much appreciation goes out to these two gentlemen who just happened to be in the right place at the right time this afternoon,” stated Banks District Firefighter and Incident Scene Commander Lulu Jordan. “Had it not been for these two, the outcome would have been much worse.”

There were no reported injuries to firefighters battling this blaze. Banks firefighters were assisted at the scene by the Adrian and Selbyville volunteer fire departments. The Pickens and Walkersville volunteer fire departments were cancelled before they arrived on scene.

To view additional images and captured video from this incident, please go to the following OneDrive link: https://1drv.ms/f/s!AkJZ43IeI4dogYpaTLfSVjY0yGszeQ