Sunday, May 3, 2015
YOLO COUNTY NEWS
99 CENTS

Fire investigators: Maintenance work sparked apartment blaze

By
From page A1 | February 13, 2013 |

Smoke billows from the roof of the University Court Apartments, 515 Sycamore Lane, on Monday afternoon as Davis firefighters respond to the third-alarm fire that displaced as many as 20 people. Davis Fire Department/Courtesy photo

Maintenance workers soldering a bathroom pipe accidentally started Monday’s third-alarm fire that damaged nine apartments and displaced more than a dozen residents, many of them UC Davis students preparing for midterm exams, Davis Fire Department officials said.

Division Chief Paul Swanson said the fire began in the wall of a vacant first-floor unit at the University Court Apartments — where the workers had been replacing a leaky pipe — and traveled upward in V-shaped pattern of flames, damaging eight other apartments in the process.

“It just went up the pipe to the second floor and entered through the vacant spaces” in the wall, he said.

Six of the apartments sustained “significant” damage in the 1:30 p.m. blaze, while three others were limited to sheetrock and water damage, Swanson said. Total losses to the complex were estimated at $500,000.

A manager at the apartment complex at 515 Sycamore Lane declined to comment about the incident Tuesday, but confirmed that the American Red Cross was assisting residents who had been displaced from the one- and two-bedroom apartments.

They included a woman who had to be rescued from her third-floor apartment after she was trapped by heavy smoke inside the unit.

Acting fire Capt. Luis Parrilla said he was pulling a hose toward the burning building when he heard the woman yelling for help from her bedroom window. He climbed up to her apartment, and, when she didn’t answer the front door, forced his way inside.

“Tons of smoke started coming out of the apartment,” said Parrilla, who recalled finding a layer of smoke that shrouded the top half of the living area. He found the woman in her bedroom and escorted her outside, where she and a second woman from another apartment were treated for smoke inhalation.

“She did the right thing by going to the window, which was perfect,” Parrilla said.

The fire reached third-alarm status due to the number of personnel and amount of equipment required to fight the blaze, bringing in assistance from the UC Davis, Woodland, Dixon and West Sacramento fire departments who either responded to the fire scene or provided station coverage elsewhere in the city.

At one point, there were as many as 35 firefighters on scene, which was not fully cleared until about 6 p.m. Monday.

Melissa Marzan, a UCD sophomore whose apartment isn’t far from the damaged units, said she knew something was wrong when she arrived home shortly after 2 p.m. and encountered several fire engines with flashing lights.

“I was worried, because I had a midterm and my stuff was still inside,” said Marzan, 19. “I ended up just grabbing my laptop and study notes, and waited it out until I could go back.”

When she returned, she saw several residents of the damaged apartments packing up their cars.

Jordan Scott, communications director for the Red Cross’ Capital Region chapter, said the organization provided housing assistance for 13 displaced residents, who were put up in local hotels for several days until they could make other arrangements. Some of them also had food and clothing needs, Scott said.

— Reach Lauren Keene at [email protected] or 530-747-8048. Follow her on Twitter at @laurenkeene

Comments

comments

  • Recent Posts

  • Enter your email address to subscribe to this newspaper and receive notifications of new articles by email.

  • .

    News

    Breaking barriers: For Prieto, it’s all about hard work

    By Lauren Keene | From Page: A1 | Gallery

     
    Council to hear about drought pricing

    By Dave Ryan | From Page: A1

    Peaceful Baltimore demonstrators praise top prosecutor

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

     
    Nigeria: Nearly 300 freed women, children led to safety

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

     
    For the record

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A2

     
    Graveyard thefts land three Woodlanders behind bars

    By Lauren Keene | From Page: A3

    Downtown altercation leads to injuries

    By Anne Ternus-Bellamy | From Page: A3

     
    Woman arrested for brandishing knife on overpass

    By Anne Ternus-Bellamy | From Page: A3

    Yolo DA launches monthly newsletter

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

     
    Can plants talk? UCD prof will answer that question

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A3 | Gallery

    A Scottish setting for local author’s next book

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A3

     
    Free beginner yoga class offered

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

     
    Video discusses surveillance of prostate cancer

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

    NAMI support group meets May 10

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

     
    Dr. G featured on the radio

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

    Fee proposed on rail cars that haul oil, other flammables

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A4 | Gallery

     
    Indoor Fun Fly comes to Woodland

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

     
    Internships move UCD doctoral students beyond academia

    By Julia Ann Easley | From Page: A5 | Gallery

    Make Mom a warm vanilla sugar scrub

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A6

     
    The secret to Mother’s Day gifting success: Give time, not stuff

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A6

    Letter book is series of collected missives thanking Mom

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

     
    If your mom fancies something fancy, consider a tea party

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

    Out of Africa and back to Davis: James Carey will give special presentation

    By Kathy Keatley Garvey | From Page: A9 | Gallery

     
    Big Day of Giving makes philanthropy easy

    By Tanya Perez | From Page: A10 | Gallery

    Tuleyome Tales: How are a snake and a mushroom alike?

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A12 | Gallery

     
    Tuleyome hosts Snow Mountain camping trip

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A12 | Gallery

    .

    Forum

    End of life doesn’t mean life must end

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: B4 | Gallery

     
    Advancing education for California’s former foster youths

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: B4

    With sincere gratitude

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: B4

     
    A wonderful day of service

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: B4

    Please help Baltimore

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: B4

     
    Eyewitness to the ‘fall’ of Vietnam: It was not a bloodbath

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: B5 | Gallery

    He can’t give it up

    By Creators Syndicate | From Page: B6

     
     
    Dangers from prescription pills

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: B6

    .

    Sports

    UCD softball splits with Titans

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1 | Gallery

     
    Trifecta of Devil teams open playoffs Tuesday

    By Evan Ream | From Page: B1 | Gallery

     
    Defending champ DHS clinches a baseball playoff berth

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1

    Making memories at Aggie Stadium

    By Wayne Tilcock | From Page: B3 | Gallery

     
    Sports briefs: DHS boys win to reach lacrosse playoffs

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B3 | Gallery

    UCD roundup: Aggie women speed past Hornets

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B12 | Gallery

     
    Pro baseball roundup: Hudson pitches Giants past Angels

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B12

    .

    Features

    .

    Arts

    .

    Business

    Arcadia partners on soybean trait to improve yield

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A8

     
    Marrone opens new greenhouse

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A8

     
    New firm helps students on path to college

    By Wendy Weitzel | From Page: A8

    Yolo County real estate sales

    By Zoe Juanitas | From Page: A8

     
    .

    Obituaries

    .

    Comics

    Comics: Sunday, May 3, 2015

    By Creator | From Page: B8