Sacramento, CA | Fire suppression efforts hampered by out of service engine in an early Thursday morning house fire.

Early Thursday morning, a South Sacramento man arrives at his 7th Avenue home to find it on fire and calls 9-1-1.

The home is located almost around the corner from fire station 6 on Martin Luther King Blvd which houses Engine 6 (carries water), Truck 6 (carries tools and ladders, no water) and Medic 6.

Per Capt. Burges, Sacramento Fire Department’s Public Information Officer, Truck 6 arrived on scene in 3 minutes from the call to 9-1-1. Engine 6 was out of service and unable to respond due to being browned out. Burges explained that due to city budgetary issues, different companies (referring to an engine or a truck) are “browned out” or put out of service, for 24 hours.  A sign sat in the driveway of station 6 in front of Engine 6’s bay, stating “…please voice your concerns to Fire Chief Jones: 808-1601. In this case, the next available engine was located at Martin Luther King Blvd and 47 Avenue. Engine 56 arrived on scene in 6 minutes to put the first water on the blaze.

Per Burges, The occupant of the home was outside when fire crews arrived and voiced his frustration with what he felt was a delayed response of fire engine companies. Burges also stated in a press release, “…fire crews did arrive within three to seven minutes, which is well within the Saramento Fire Department response goals of five to seven minutes for any district.”

A fire doubles in size every 60 seconds, Burges told us, and stated that water was delayed getting on the fire in this case. Burges did state that a six minute response was within the department’s acceptable response time, however, had Engine 6 been in service, it and it’s crew would have arrived in 3 minutes with Truck 6.

The home owner was transported to the hospital via paramedics with mild smoke inhalation per Burges. The cause of the blaze is under investigation. The home sustained moderate damage and was saved from being a total loss Burges said.

Hear details from Sac Fire and see footage of this incident

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