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Fire Guts Goshen Home - Country Journal - 01/24/2008


Reprinted with permission from the pages of the Country Journal

Photos by Bob Labrie

January 24, 2008

Fire Guts Goshen Home - Family Gets Out Safely

GOSHEN In freezing cold temperatures that hovered around eight degrees, Goshen firefighters, with the help of nine other departments, battled a blaze at 40 Shaw Rd. on Jan. 20.  Chief Sue Labrie said that the fire was caused by a dryer in the basement that for one reason or another caught fire.  The owner’s 15 year old son tried to put it out using a fire extinguisher but the fire spread to the walls and eventually 911 had to be called.

Rear of house

Fire gutted this Shaw Rd. home on Sunday

Firefighter Bob Labrie reported that, “When firefighters attempted to make entry to the home through the front door, they sounded the floor with a Halligan tool (banged on it) to determine if it was safe to proceed.  The tool went through the floor which required them to fight the fire first from side basement window to do an initial knock down, then from the walkout basement area to the rear of the home.”

Front of house


The fire’s aftermath.

The house was a large two story building owned by Marc Fromm.  The family was home at the time and all got out safely except for their cat.  The Red Cross is helping them out.  Unfortunately, much of the interior of the building was gutted.

Hole in kitchen floor 


A view of the kitchen minus the floor.  This is the entryway where firefighters tested the floor and found it too weak to stand on.

Firefighters arrived on scene around 1:20 p.m., and in freezing cold temperatures and vicious wind chills they battled the fire that was declared out at 6 p.m.  Firefighters then stayed all night in three-degree weather and biting wind to make sure no hot spots reignited.  Chief Labrie said they finally left around 12:15 p.m. on Monday.

Walk-out basement

Basement level looking towards the front of the house.  This is where the firefighters made their secondary attack.  The ceiling under the porch was pulled down to expose hot spots.

During the battle, a Plainfield firefighter was slightly injured when he was accidentally cut by another firefighters hook.  He was taken to Cooley Dickinson Hospital to be checked out.


A closer look at the charring patterns in the siding underneath the sunroom on the first floor shows the intensity of the fire.

Helping out were roughly 70 firefighters from nine local Fire Departments including Chesterfield, Williamsburg, Cummington, Plainfield, Ashfield, Windsor and Westhampton, with Huntington and Buckland providing back up coverage in all these towns.

Rear sun room


A rear view of the house looking into the south-facing sunroom.

(Thursday, January 24,2008)