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Mid-Morning Fire Guts Half a House on South Central in Flagler Beach as 2 Residents Escape

| September 29, 2016

flagler beach fire south central

Flagletr Beach Fire Chief Bobby Pace, in orange toward the center, speaks with Flagler County Fire Capt. Richard Bennett less than 45 minutes after the fire had broken out, and after it had been put out this morning on South Central Avenue. Click on the image for larger view. (© FlaglerLive)

At 10:30 this morning Pat Bauvi was in his room taking a nap in his house at 1915 South Central Avenue in Flagler Beach. Thankfully for him, he was not to deeply asleep.


“I was taking a little nap, it’s my day off, watching Kelly Live,” Beuvi, 57, said, standing a few feet away from the now-charred part of his house, “and all I heard is glass breaking, and I woke up to just—a house full of smoke.”

The fire had shut down South Central at 19th Street. The house is on the east side of South Central, toward the middle of the block, between 19th and 20th Streets.

Bauvi’s 25-year-old son Zach was in his own bedroom at the far-south end of the house. “I yelled for him and I got out the front door—no shoes, no glasses, no wallet, no nothing.” That’s how he still was at 11:15 as Flagler Beach and Flagler County firefighters had finished putting out the flames, and were conducting their follow-up operations to ensure against additional breakouts.

“I was in my room, I ran out. First I thought people were arguing outside,” Zach Bauvi said. He too then heard windows break. “I grabbed my shorts, I grabbed the cat and I ran out the front door. That’s it: no idea what happened. I was watching TV.”

They had lived in the 1,500-square-foot house about a dozen years. It was built in 1961 and last sold to its current owner, Lau Hsueh Yen, of Holliswood, N.Y., in 2005, for $450,000. It is now valued at $258,000, according to the property appraiser.

Flagler Beach police Sgt. David Acieri was first on scene, followed shortly by Flagler County Sheriff’s deputy Mark O’Leary, who happened to be in the neighborhood serving judicial papers. He changed plans and lent Acieri a hand as firefighters and the Flagler Beach Fire Police converged on the scene.

“There was smoke billowing from the roof” when they arrived, Flagler Beach Police Chief Matthew Doughney said.

By 11:15, the north side of the house was a total loss, gutted and charred though the roof had not caved in, and the rest of the house, while partly damaged in the living room—which is in the middle of the house—appeared to have survived, if somewhat damaged.

“We’re truly undetermined at this point,” Flagler Beach Fire Chief Bobby Pace said. “Flames basically coming out the eaves when we showed up, heavy plumes across the ocean there. What we have right now, we’re just looking for extinctions, we have some smoldering areas, you can see a couple of vent holes we cut into the roof. Now we’re just doing our once over.”

The Flagler Beach Fire Department used its new quint firetruck’s ladder to extend over the house and drill the roof to make those holes, from which smoke could still be seen spilling out at 11:15.

“There was some damage into the living room, if you look into that window you can see some char, I don’t think there was extensive damage to the south of the house.” But asked if the house was salvageable, Pace said: “I wouldn’t want to make that determination right now.”

Two crews went into the house, he said, one of them entering the house from the garage area as soon as the majority of the flames had been controlled and pushed back, and another attacking from the south end of the house.

No one was injured, and no one, other than the residents of the house at 1915 South Central, had to be evacuated.

south central fire

The portion of the house damaged most. Click on the image for larger view. (© FlaglerLive)


south central fire flagler beach

The south end of the house. Click on the image for larger view. (© FlaglerLive)


south central fire quint ladder

Smoke seeped out of vent holes firefighters drilled into the roof. Click on the image for larger view. (© FlaglerLive)


north view south central fire

The house viewed from the north. Click on the image for larger view. (© FlaglerLive)


quint

Flagler Beach’s new quint in action. Click on the image for larger view. (© FlaglerLive)


oxygen fire rescue

Oxygen to the rescue: no one was harmed in the fire. Click on the image for larger view. (© FlaglerLive)


flagler beach fire

The billows captured by a driver on State Road A1A as the fire raged. (© Jake Gilbert for FlaglerLive)

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5 Responses for “Mid-Morning Fire Guts Half a House on South Central in Flagler Beach as 2 Residents Escape”

  1. Sw says:

    May God Bless the Firemen/women

  2. Active says:

    Please be aware if you pull up to a fire:
    DO NOT BREAK WINDOWS
    Once you have established that a window needs to be removed and you have chosen which one to break, timing is everything. Coordinate removal of the window with the interior hose crew. The crew will have to have a charged line and must be ready to advance into the fire area. Premature ventilation can cause problems that can be detrimental to the outcome of the firefight by increasing the fire’s intensity and conditions and pulling the fire into uninvolved areas.
    At larger fires, flames can be drawn to open windows. Therefore, if you break a window in an unburned area, you can pull fire to that area, causing greater damage. You also can draw fire toward victims who may still be in the building, not to mention firefighters who may be conducting a search.
    If the hoseline crew does not have adequate water or is not advancing into the fire area, do not break the window. When windows are broken and hose crews don’t move in, the introduction of oxygen can quickly intensify the fire. So if the hoseline crew cannot get water on the fire in a timely manner, do not break the window.

    Great Job Firefighters!!

  3. NortonSmitty says:

    For all you long time locals, this was the house of Robin who tended bar at the Golden Lion for many years. Short hair, glasses, sweet disposition. She must have been left with damn near nothing. It’s time for us to stand up and support our locals in their time of need. I don’t donate to Big Time National charities because they are mostly thieves preying on our sympathies. For instance, the Wounded Warrior Project spends 87% of their donations on salaries and overhead. The Red Cross took in $200 Million and built six one-room hovels with it.
    That is why I donate locally and direct. So if they put up a donation bucket for Robin at the Golden Lion or anywhere else in town, donate. Because you know it will get to the people who need it.

  4. NortonSmitty says:

    For all you long time locals, this was the house of Robin who tended bar at the Golden Lion for many years. Short hair, glasses, sweet disposition. She must have been left with damn near nothing. It’s time for us to stand up and support our locals in their time of need. I don’t donate to Big Time National charities because they are mostly thieves preying on our sympathies. For instance, the Wounded Warrior Project spends 87% of their donations on salaries and overhead. The Red Cross took in $200 Million for the earthquake in Haiti and built six one-room hovels with it. Where did the rest go?
    That is why I donate locally and direct. So if they put up a donation bucket for Robin at the Golden Lion or anywhere else in town, donate. Because you know it will get to the people who need it.

  5. Markingthedays says:

    :-(

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