The Chili Fire Department (near Rochester) finished 2017 with four fires in 48 hours. The first call began at 1236 on December 26, 2017. It was a shed fire on Ballantyne Road, which was fully involved with an exposure problem on arrival. The occupant was near the ignition source and sustained burns to his face and was transported to Strong Memorial Hospital. The second occurred on the same day on Chili Avenue at 1950. This fire was a single-dwelling fire with the possibility of people trapped, but quickly escalated to heavy smoke and flames. Units had water supply issues including a passing motorist who clipped a supply line emptying the hosebed of one of the engines. Multiple mutual aid responded. One civilian was treated for chest pain, while a couple firefighters had slip-and-fall injuries but were not transported. Fire number three occurred on Park Hill Court in a multi-unit apartment complex on December 27, 2017, at 0256. Moderate winds drove the fire into the next building, leaving 22 people homeless. One person jumped from a window to escape the blaze. A transit bus was brought in for firefighter rehab. Five aerials were employed to quell this three-alarm fire. The last fire occurred in a basement on Ballantyne Road in a single-family occupancy on December 28, 2017, at 0508. The ambient temperature was four-degrees F and firefighter rehab was again put into operation using a transit bus. The following day, Brighton filled in overnight so members could get some quality sleep. With four fires in so short a time span in a town of 30,000 residents, people started asking if the fires were related. The Chili Fire Department issued a statement that, although the fires were not completely investigated by the Monroe County Fire Bureau, they were certain they were not connected.
– Fire News photo by John Spaulding