More details released in 2 Cornplanter fires

More details were provided Monday by Cornplanter Volunteer Fire Department about two blazes that occurred over the weekend in Cornplanter Township.

Cornplanter chief Ben Schwab said the home at 15 Fairview Ave. was a total loss after a blaze that started at about 5:30 a.m. Sunday.

Information in Monday’s newspaper incorrectly reported the fire was at 11 Fairview Ave.

No one was injured at the two-story wood frame house, Schwab said.

Schwab said a campfire in a metal fire enclosure on the back porch of the home caught the porch’s composite wood decking on fire. The blaze then spread to the porch’s roof and into the rear of the house, Schwab said.

“There was heavy fire and it pretty much got into all of the rooms and the second floor,” Schwab said.

Schwab said firefighters arrived at the scene in about five minutes. A single stall garage was also on fire when they arrived, Schwab said.

“We were able to keep the fire contained from the neighbor’s house,” Schwab said. “The neighbor’s house, 11 Fairview, is very close to the house so we got a knockdown done very quick on the fire.”

Oil City, Seneca, Rouseville, Reno, Pleasantville and Rocky Grove volunteer firefighters also responded, Schwab said. The firefighters were at the scene about four hours, according to Schwab.

No one hurt in brush fire

Meanwhile, Schwab said no one was injured in a brush fire that was first reported at about 8 p.m. Saturday.

Schwab said the blaze burned roughly one acre of a wooded area behind Oil City Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center.

“We do believe the cause of that was from (a) logging company,” Schwab said.

“We haven’t had any rain,” Schwab said. “It could have been from a chainsaw throwing sparks and the operator not seeing it.”

“It was not easy to get in because there were tree tops everywhere,” Schwab said. “They just started logging it on Saturday.”

Schwab said Cornplanter and Oil City fire trucks arrived at the same time within five minutes. He said the scene of the fire was about a quarter mile into the woods.

“That’s what we strive for, to minimize damage and save property and life,” Schwab said.

No buildings or equipment were damaged in the fire, Schwab said.

Firefighters returned to the scene Sunday morning after it was reported at about 10:30 a.m. that the fire had rekindled.

Schwab said the area “just had hot spots.”

He said “we were tired” after firefighters responded to Saturday night’s brush fire and the two Sunday morning fires.