Monday fire under investigation

Published 12:00 am Monday, December 8, 2003

AHOSKIE – Heavy smoke left a portion of Catherine Creek Road in a dense fog on Monday morning where a house fire was quickly extinguished, preventing a number of residents from becoming homeless.

According to Ahoskie Fire Chief Ken Dilday, the fire was contained to one small area of an eight-room boarding house, located at 119 Catherine Creek Road.

&uot;I was one of the first to arrive on the scene and there was heavy smoke coming from the residence,&uot; said Dilday. &uot;With that much smoke, I felt certain we had a large fire on our hands, but fortunately this fire’s bark was worse than its bite.&uot;

Dilday said the fire was contained to room number eight, one rented by John Outlaw. Each of the home’s eight rooms are located downstairs. Delores Ruffin of Winton owns the home.

&uot;Mr. Outlaw informed me that everything was okay when he left for work at 5 a.m.,&uot; stated Dilday. &uot;We were able to contain the fire to his room, but the smoke did make its way to a couple other rooms.&uot;

Dilday’s biggest concern upon arrival was that he saw the billowing, gray/white smoke and the close proximity of the residence to nearby homes.

&uot;I didn’t hesitate to call for back-up,&uot; he noted. &uot;The adjacent dwellings could have been in danger and I felt that the more manpower we had, the better off we were.&uot;

Dilday thanked members of the Union and Winton volunteer fire departments for their assistance as they backed-up the 11 Ahoskie firefighters on the scene.

&uot;Everyone involved did a super job,&uot; he said. &uot;I’d also like to thank the Ahoskie Police Department for blocking off the street in order to allow us room to work.&uot;

The Ahoskie firemen answered the call at 10:01 a.m. and cleared the scene at 11:25 a.m.

Dilday said the cause of the fire was under investigation.

No one was injured.