Blaze destroys house off Drummond Street|[06/15/07]

Published 12:00 am Friday, June 15, 2007

A firefighter was rushed to the hospital Thursday evening after a section of chimney fell on him while battling a blaze at a house where squatters apparently had been living.

Doug Holman, 42, a Vicksburg Fire Department firefighter and EMT for three years, was treated at River Region Medical Center and released after being struck on the helmet by a heavy section of hot brick at 813 Avenue C, Fire Chief Keith Rogers said this morning.

&#8220The majority of the chimney fell outward but there was about a 4-foot section that fell about 10 or 12 feet,” Rogers said. &#8220The impact primarily hit him on the helmet and his left shoulder and just nailed him to the floor. A couple of guys dragged him out, and he was treated on the scene, then taken to the hospital.”

Email newsletter signup

Sign up for The Vicksburg Post's free newsletters

Check which newsletters you would like to receive
  • Vicksburg News: Sent daily at 5 am
  • Vicksburg Sports: Sent daily at 10 am
  • Vicksburg Living: Sent on 15th of each month

Holman was inside trying to control the blaze when the roof caved in at 6:40 p.m. The fire was under control by 7 p.m. It destroyed the one-story, wood-frame house as it consumed the roof and interior.

The fire was at least the fourth in just more than a week in Vicksburg, including two at a South Frontage Road apartment complex where residents of 14 apartments were displaced, and one at a Locust Street apartment house, where 14 people lost their homes.

On Avenue C, near Drummond Street, residents had moved out of the house and had utilities disconnected about a year ago, neighbors said.

But recently, they said, an older man and woman had been going in and out as if they were living there.

Capt. Clarence Maxey Jr., who went inside the house, to fight the fire, said someone could have been living inside, but it was hard to tell.

&#8220It was hard to see through the smoke there on the inside,” he said. &#8220There was still furniture around.”

Neighbors said they had seen a man leave several hours before the fire started.

Mikcah Reed, 6, was the first to see the fire.

“I was going outside to let my dog outside and then I saw the smoke come up.”

She ran and told her mother, who dialed 911.

Flames were already coming out of the roof when firefighters arrived, Maxey said.

He said the cause of the fire remains under investigation.

Records in the Warren County Tax Assessor’s Office indicate the house is owned by an estate.