fire apts 120Lansing firefighters responded to an apartment fire in the The Meadows at Ithaca at 100 Graham Road in the Village of Lansing Saturday, around 1am.  The fire caused significant damage to three of the eight apartments before the fire was substantially put out in 30 minutes after a faulty hydrant delayed responders.  One tenant was treated for smoke inhalation, but there were no other injuries.  Responders from the Lansing, Cayuga Heights and Ithaca Fire Departments continued to extinguish hot spots, remaining on the scene until 5:30am.

"We had a slight delay in fighting the fire when we first started attacking it, the initial attack line was deployed and firefighting operations began, during this same time a large diameter hose was hooked to the hydrant and charged, within seconds of charging the large diameter hose the hydrant broke at its base in the ground," says Lansing Fire Chief Scott Purcell. "We lost water pressure and had to establish another source of water at another hydrant at the complex. During this hydrant relocation all firefighters were pulled from the interior of the building, once the new hydrant was secured and working we went back to aggressively fighting the fire, the changing of the hydrant probably cost us somewhere between 5-7 minutes."

fire apts 400Photos by Karen Veaner

The apartment fire was reported at 12:48am Sunday at 100 Graham Rd in the Village of Lansing.  Lansing Fire Department had 18 firefighters at the scene. Cayuga Heights had about 20 firefighters and Ithaca Fire Department sent five.  The Lansing Fire Department responded with 2 engines and a ladder truck. Cayuga Heights responded with an engine and ladder truck, and Ithaca with 2 engines.

The fire started in apartment 3E.  Purcell says fire officials believe it was an accident caused when a frying pan with oil in it was left on the stove top unattended.

The fire caused major damage to apartments 3E, 3D, and 3F, with smoke and structural damage to the rest of the building.  Seven of the eight apartments were rented, and those tenants were displaced, as the whole building was considered unsafe.  The Red Cross was on the scene to help some of the tenants find alternative lodging, while others are staying with friends.

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"There were no injuries to any firefighters on the scene," Purcell says. There was one tenant that was evaluated for smoke inhalation. All resiidents were out of the building upon our arrival, thanks to WORKING SMOKE DETECTORS. I can not stress that enough to the residents of our community and everywhere: make sure you have smoke detectors on every floor of your home, and in every sleeping area and make sure they WORK!"

The Lansing department had its equipment cleaned and back in service by 8:30am Sunday morning.

"Kudos to all firefighters that were there from Ithaca, Cayuga Heights and Lansing," Purcell says.  "They all worked well together and did an exceptional job."