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A fast moving fire gutted a Roslyn Heights home last Thursday, causing a significant amount of damage to the Oakdale Lane home and causing two minor injuries to firefighters.

Firefighters responding to a reported kitchen appliance fire last Thursday evening found on their arrival most of the house engulfed in flames, with significant amounts of fire and smoke billowing from the structure's roof.

According to Chief Jeffrey Laureano of the Roslyn Fire Companies, who oversaw operations at the Oakdale Lane location, a second alarm was transmitted immediately upon his arrival, and in addition to Roslyn units, mutual aid assistance was summoned from the Glenwood Fire Company and Port Washington Fire Department. Within minutes, seven fire engines, two ambulances and five chiefs were on the scene, Chief Laureano reported. The fire went to a third alarm, before being brought under control.

"Initial units encountered heavy smoke in the vicinity as they responded to the incident, making visibility and the positioning of incoming trucks that much more difficult," said Chief Laureano.

Shortly after their arrival, throngs of firefighters from several engine companies entered the burning house and made an initial attack on an insidious fire; however, they were met with heavy loads of fire, which had made its way up into the attic and spread throughout the home. The occupants of the home were located and it was quickly confirmed that no one was inside.

As the load of fire became more intense, and increasingly more water filled the split level home, conditions became extremely dangerous for firefighters operating within. At that time, commanding officers called for all firefighters to evacuate until they were able to secure a larger portion of the fire under control through the use of large diameter hoses known as master streams that dump copious amounts of water on the fire from the exterior. Only minutes later, firefighters again entered the home and despite dangerous conditions were able to extinguish all remaining fire.

In addition to the mutual aid companies at the scene, units were called from the Sea Cliff, Glen Cove, Albertson, Manhasset-Lakeville and Westbury Fire Departments to cover all other fire and EMS emergencies within the Roslyn Fire Protection District for the duration of the incident, which is standard operating procedure for backup coverage during incidents which tie up multiple fire units for a protracted time period.

The Nassau County Police Department's Emergency Ambulance Bureau assisted with two advanced life support ambulances. Two firefighters suffered minor injuries and were treated and released at the scene.

The Oakdale Lane fire was the third noteworthy fire of the week for the Roslyn Fire Companies. On Tuesday, Feb. 17, units responded to a fire in a men's bathroom and a supply closet at the St. Mary's AHRC located at 440 Round Hill Road in East Hills. That fire was contained in size by firefighters who arrived quickly and extinguished the burning contents of those two rooms.

Early the next morning, Feb. 18, at approximately 3:30 a.m. the Roslyn Fire Companies received an alarm for a basement fire, which turned out to be caused by a faulty boiler. Crews were able to contain that fire with several fire extinguishers.


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