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Flintville, Vanntown, Elora and Park City Volunteer Fire Rescue, along with the Tennessee Division of Forestry in Flintville, were paged. Help was requested from Franklin County’s Lexie Crossroads, Belvidere and Huntland volunteer fire departments which responded to AC Pallet Shop at 2902 Winchester Highway where the fire quickly spread through hardwood pallets.
Crethton Caldwell, Lincoln County assistant chief and chief of Flintville Fire and Rescue, said it’s hard to say what might have caused the fire.
“Forestry came with a dozer and pushed the pallets back away from the fire – that’s one of the things that helped the most,” Caldwell said.
“We actually ran the Elora water tank completely out of water – I estimate we used 45,000 gallons of water. Elora is a 250,000 tank,” Caldwell said.
Normally firefighters use about 40,000 gallons of water on a house fire – “We never run out,” he said.
LCBPU did pump some more water into the tank for them, but, said Caldwell, “If it had been a matter of life and death, we’d be in a precarious situation.”
Lincoln County units were allowed to use a Franklin County hydrant about three-miles down the highway.
“We have had over 100 calls for the year – we usually have 170-180 calls … and we’re going to have more fires.”
Caldwell said he wanted to thank the Franklin County units that came to the fire.
Three firefighters, two from Elora and one from Flintville, were overcome by the heat. One was treated by Lincoln Medical EMS for heat exhaustion.
Unrelated to the pallet fire, on Saturday a house at 36 Old Huntsville Road caught fire and became a total loss. According to a report by Lincoln County Sheriff’s Deputy Shannon Bostick, the owner, Stephen Fisher, heard a pop on the deck before the fire started. Parks City and Central Volunteer Fire Rescue responded.
Firefighters also responded to some smaller fires over the weekend, including one that began when a tree fell on some power lines on Teal Hollow Road Sunday morning. The tree caught fire and knocked out the electric power to several residents.