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May 21, 2016 - 12:52pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in fire, batavia, news.


Richard Frazier places a cross with a bear and flowers next to a tree outside 8157 State Street Road, Batavia, where two little boys died in a fire last night.

Frazier, who has a 4-year-old daughter himself, doesn't know the family but said he was heartbroken by the tragedy.

"As a parent, I could not imagine what it would be like if something like this happened to my child," Frazier said. "It's just insane to think that we just live life every day, taking life for granted and at any point, it can all be done."

Investigators were on scene last night until nearly 4 a.m. and then went home to get some much-needed rest and to be able to return in the daylight. They started arriving again about noon. It will likely be several hours before their work is complete. Until this phase of the investigation is done, we're not likely to hear more about the potential cause of the fire and other circumstances surrounding last night's events.

The names of the children or mother have not yet been officially released.

UPDATE 3:40 p.m.: Investigators have less than an hours work to do, but sources on scene say it is unlikely there will be any announcement today about the cause.  There is more work to do away from the scene and that could take a couple of days.  There should be a press release coming out this afternoon from the Sheriff's Office that will contain names.

UPDATE: Press release from the American Red Cross:

Volunteers from the American Red Cross responded to a fire on State Street Road in Batavia early Saturday morning, providing immediate emergency assistance for two adults and two children. Red Cross assistance typically includes vouchers for temporary housing, food and clothing as needed, and Disaster Mental Health volunteers are available to help with the emotional aspect of disaster. Those affected will meet with caseworkers in the coming days to work on a longer-term recovery plan.

Disaster Action Team (DAT) volunteers Suzanne Kowalcyk and James McMoil responded to the scene of this fire. The Red Cross would like to express its sympathies to everyone affected by this tragedy.

May 21, 2016 - 3:18am
posted by Howard B. Owens in fire, batavia, news.


Two young children died in a house fire at 8157 State Street Road, Batavia, late Friday night, at a time when their mother was not home.

It's unclear if any adults were in the apartment at the time of the fire, said Chief Deputy Jerome Brewster, Sheriff's Office, which is leading the investigation into the fire.

The cause has yet to be determined, but it started in the bottom apartment in the back of the residence.

The bodies of the children, both age 2, were found in that same location.

Brewster said he couldn't say for sure if the mother left the children with an adult to supervise them, or if she left them alone while she went to the store.

"I don't know and we're going to get to the bottom of that," Brewster said. "That's why we're going to talk with the mother."

The mother was in no condition to be interviewed tonight, Brewster said.

The fire was reported just before 10 p.m. when the upstairs resident returned home and spotted the fire. He called 9-1-1.

Town of Batavia arrived on scene quickly and fire chiefs were told there was a possibility of people trapped in the residence, so Deputy Chief Dan Coffey said he quickly sounded a second alarm.

The back of the house was fully involved at that point. The first firefighters on scene made entry and located the deceased children.

Asked if the evidence was pointing toward a fire deliberately set or accidental, Brewster said investigators are leaning toward accidental.

"That's why we have fire service here, to investigate that," Brewster said. "Right now, I'm not sure. It doesn't look like anything other than that -- accidental -- that's why they are here and that's what their job is. They will go through and make a thorough investigation."

About 10 minutes after firefighters arrived on the scene, two women ran up to the house and had to be restrained as they tried to enter it. Over the course of the next half hour, more people arrived who seemed to be friends or family members and there were women wailing and yelling. Troopers, deputies and Batavia PD officers did their best to assist them.

The two apartments were occupied by members of the same family, and members of that family also lived in a neighboring house. At one point, neighbors thought three children died in the fire, but that third child was in the neighboring house, according to landlord Joe Burke.

"It's my understanding that the mother went out to get milk for her little kids," Burke said.

Yellow tape was put around the scene at one point during the night and criminal investigators were called in once the fire was out and entry was safe for them.

But both Coffey and Brewster said the appearance of a criminal investigation doesn't necessarily mean a crime is suspected.

"It's a crime scene until proven otherwise," Coffey said, who besides being a volunteer firefighter is a Batavia police officer. "Obviously, we have two fatalities, so we're erring on the side of cause. We're treating it as a crime until proven different, but that's not indicative of any sort of information that we know at this point. It is how we would normally handle a call like this."

The location is the same as a reported hit-and-run accident April 1 in which resident Brian Ace suffered injuries and had to be taken by Mercy Flight to an area hospital. Ace declined to press charges in that case.

Investigators, at this point, don't seem to believe there is any connection between that incident and the fire.

There were no fatal fires in the Town of Batavia Fire District from 2008 until this year. This is the second fatal fire for Town volunteers in less than a month. On April 30, a fire at a residence on Oak Orchard Road claimed the life of Roger Saile, age 90.

"Obviously, it's been a tough stretch for us," Coffey said. "This one, obviously, is going to hurt. Just two weeks ago, three weeks ago, we also had that other one, so we're going ot make sure that we take care of our members, but it's going to be a difficult time for us."










May 16, 2016 - 9:52pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in fire, batavia, news.

City fire has been dispatched to 208 South Swan St., Batavia, for a reported bonfire in the parking lot.

May 15, 2016 - 4:08pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in fire, Le Roy, news.

A porch fire is reported at 62 W. Main St., Le Roy.

A chief reports smoke showing.

Le Roy fire and Le Roy ambulance dispatched, along with Bergen's ladder truck.

UPDATE 4:35 p.m.: This turned out to be a mulch fire.

May 13, 2016 - 9:49pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in fire, batavia, news.

A tree fire is reported in the area of 621 E. Main St., Batavia.

City fire is dispatched.

May 12, 2016 - 10:10am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Le Roy, fire, news.

Le Roy fire is called to a report of a utility pole fire on Lake Street Road at Selden Road.

A chief on scene reports the pole is on fire.

UPDATE 10:22 a.m.: Fire is out.

April 30, 2016 - 5:21pm
posted by Billie Owens in fire, Alabama.

A small house, and the woods around it, are reportedly on fire in Alabama at 6985 Meadville Road. Alabama Fire Department is responding along with mutual aid from Pembroke and Indian Falls.

UPDATE 5:29 p.m.: Fire command requests law enforcement to the scene. Five gasoline containers and 40 paint cans are said to be on the property.

UPDATE 5:42 p.m.: "We've got it knocked down pretty good," reports command, noting smoke is visible "over the hill." Corfu is also responding, along with Akron.

UPDATE 5:53 p.m.: The fire is mostly knocked down but smoke is still pouring from a crawl space over the rear wall, which is proving hard to access.

UPDATE 7:12 p.m.: National Grid requested to the scene.

April 30, 2016 - 10:59am
posted by Howard B. Owens in fire, batavia, news.


Roger Saile, 90, the lone occupant of a residence at 8056 Oak Orchard Road, died as a result of a fire in his house this morning.

The fire was reported by a truck driver passing by the residence at about 5:25 a.m.

The cause of the fire is under investigation by State Police, Town of Batavia fire and Genesee County Emergency Services.

Firefighters from the town arrived on scene quickly after the fire was reported.

"We had a quick arrival and an initial attack of two engines, a ladder and a rescue," said Assistant Chief Dan Coffey. "We were able to get in their and get a good initial attack and search going."

Saile was deceased when he was found inside the residence.

After the fire was out, during what firefighters call "overhaul," one volunteer firefighter was under a ceiling when it collapsed. The firefighter was not seriously injured and was transported to UMMC for evaluation.

Crews were on scene from Town of Batavia, Elba, Oakfield, Stafford and the City of Batavia.

A neighbor described Saile as "a good man."

Michelle Gerold said sons Christian and Daniel would visit with him, and when he passed by their house he would toot his horn and wave and they often ran into him at one of his favorite restaurants, Sport of Kings. 

He was always full of stories about his life.

"We would hear about the old days when we would see him out at a restaurant," she said. "He was overall such a nice man. We're so sad. His stories of his house, his stories of his life and how it used to be when he was growing up on a farm; he would tell us about his old vehicles. His stories just made us know he was a good person, a good individual. I loved him, my sons loved him, my husband loved him. It just breaks our hearts that he's gone now."













April 30, 2016 - 5:34am
posted by Billie Owens in fire, batavia.

A working fire is reported at 8056 Oak Orchard Road at an apartment building. Unknown if the structure is occupied, "it's possibly occupied." Town of Batavia Fire Department is responding along with Alexander's Fast team.

UPDATE 5:35 a.m.: "This is an occupied structure." Fire police are called to assist with traffic control at Route 98 and the Thruway. "Flames are through the roof."

UPDATE 5:38 a.m.: A Mercy unit is responding. Stafford fire is asked to report to the Town of Batavia Station #2 and East Pembroke to Station #1.

UPDATE 5:42 a.m.: Elba Fire Police are called to control traffic at Route 98 and West Saile Drive.

UPDATE 5:54 a.m.: An Elba engine is called to the scene.

UPDATE 5:57 a.m.: Mercy medic #3 is the second ambulance into the scene.

UPDATE 5:59 a.m.: The natural gas line has been shut off to the residence. The rescue unit with a cascade system is called in from Elba instead of an engine.

UPDATE 6 a.m.: The city's fast team is also working to extinguish the fire. The city's third platoon is called to fire headquarters.

UPDATE 6:02 a.m.: National Grid is called to the scene.

UPDATE 6:07 a.m.: Byron is requested to have one engine stand by in Elba Fire Hall.

UPDATE 6:05 a.m.: Elba Fire Police are also to control traffic at Route 98 and Park Road, and Route 63 and Veterans Memorial Drive.

UPDATE 6:25 a.m.: The fire scene is north of the Thruway, just north of Call Parkway. Le Roy is asked to stand by in Stafford's fire hall.

UPDATE 6:39 a.m.: Town command reports fire is under control; overhauling structure now. Power to the structure has been turned off.

UPDATE 6:41 a.m.: Instead of Le Roy, Bethany is asked to fill in at Stafford's fire hall.

UPDATE 7:15 a.m.: The Salvation Army is called to the scene.

UPDATE 7:22 a.m.: A third Mercy rig is called to come in non-emergency mode. Salvation Army has an ETA of about 45 minutes. An ambulance just arrived at UMMC with a patient who sustained a head injury at the fire scene.

UPDATE 7:32 a.m.: One person died in this fire. Some family notifications have been made. A code enforcement officer from Town of Batavia is called to the scene. 

UPDATE 8:54 a.m.: Route 98 has been reopened.

UPDATE 10:10 a.m.: State Police have confirmed that Roger Saile, 90, the lone resident of the house, died as a result of the fire.

April 27, 2016 - 4:12pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Le Roy, fire, news.

From Patrick S. Privatera, president of Le Roy Physical Therapy:

I'm writing to give you an update on our incident this morning. There was a small electrical fire which was sparked by a bird which had built a nest inside an outdoor electrical box housing our service connections. Humphrey Electric is on scene currently making repairs, but Le Roy PT, Village Fitness, and Dollar General will be closed the rest of the day until power can be restored.

We expect to reopen by mid-morning tomorrow. Despite the inconvenience, there were no injuries and things could have been much worse. We're very grateful to Le Roy, Stafford, Pavilion, and Bergen‎ Fire Depts and the Le Roy Police Deptartment for their assistance.  

Previously: Smoke coming from back room at Le Roy's Dollar General store

April 27, 2016 - 11:53am
posted by Howard B. Owens in fire, crime, batavia, news.



    Darlene M. Callan

A 54-year-old South Main Street woman has been charged with arson in the third degree for allegedly setting a fire in a bedroom of her home around 5 p.m., Monday.

The bedroom had fire and smoke damage but city firefighters were able to put the blaze out before it spread.

Interim Fire Chief Dan Herberger said that the actual cause of the fire cannot be released yet because it's still under investigation. 

City fire was dispatched after a woman ran to a neighbor's house and said her bedroom was on fire.

After an investigation, it was determined the only person at home at 189 S. Main St. was Darlene M. Callan and police say evidence indicates she started the fire.

Several subjects at the scene were interviewed, police say.

Callan was held on $25,000 cash bail or $50,000 bond.

The investigation was conducted by Officer Jamie Givens, Sgt. Dan Coffey, Det. Kevin Czora and Capt. Craig Williams.


April 27, 2016 - 10:07am
posted by Billie Owens in fire, Le Roy.

Smoke is coming from the back room of the Dollar General store in Le Roy. Le Roy fire and Bergen's ladder truck are responding to the possible structure fire at 3 West Ave. A store employee told the dispatcher that last night electrical work was done in the back room and now there's smoke coming from it. They are blocking the road at West Avenue.

UPDATE 10:08 a.m.: A first responder on scene reports light haze inside the building.

UPDATE 10:20 a.m.: Stafford can respond non-emergency.

UPDATE 10:26 a.m.: Code enforcement requested to the scene.

UPDATE 11:37 a.m.: Le Roy fire has remained on scene, though in service for other calls if needed. A chief now requests law enforcement to the scene.

UPDATE 11:49 a.m.: A coordinator for Emergency Services is requested to the scene.

April 26, 2016 - 2:26pm
posted by Billie Owens in fire, batavia, news, John Kennedy School.

The odor of rubber burning in the library at John Kennedy School caused a fire alarm to sound and the school was evacuated. City fire crews are on scene investigating.

UPDATE 2:49 p.m.: School officials have called the police to provide traffic control. It is apparently congested.

UPDATE 3 p.m.: The city assignment is back in service. There was a "burn out" in the rooftop.

April 26, 2016 - 10:45am
posted by Howard B. Owens in fire, Le Roy, news.

A resident in Le Roy reports smoke coming from the wires attached to the house at 62 Church St., along with a popping sound.

No sign of fire.

Le Roy fire dispatched with mutual aid from Bergen's ladder truck.

UPDATE 10:47 a.m.: Le Roy police officer on scene reports smoking coming from an outlet on the outside of the residence.

UPDATE 10:59 a.m.: There appears to be no extension into the house. National Grid is sending a crew out, 15-minute ETA.

April 25, 2016 - 6:05pm
posted by Billie Owens in batavia, fire, news.

A bedroom fire is reported in a residence at 189 S. Main St. City fire is responding. A neighbor called dispatch and said her neighbor yelled her bedroom was on fire. A first responder reports smoke is showing. Fire police are to shut down South Main at River Street.

UPDATE 6:06 p.m.: The call has gone to a second alarm. It is a working structure fire. Alexander's FAST team is called in, along with Darien's rescue unit. Town of Batavia Fire Department is asked to stand by in quarters.

UPDATE 6:12 p.m.: Mercy medics are called in. National Grid is notified -- No ETA.

UPDATE 6:13 p.m.: All off-duty personnel called to headquarters. National Fuel is notified; one of the natural gas sources could not be shut off -- ETA less than 30 minutes. Command reports fire is knocked down.

April 25, 2016 - 7:53am
posted by Howard B. Owens in fire, pembroke, news.

Smoke is reported coming from the basement at 8752 Lovers Lane Road, Pembroke.

Pembroke fire, Indian Falls fire and City of Batavia's Fast Team are dispatch.

Corfu is asked to stand by in their fire hall.

UPDATE 7:57 a.m.: The resident tells a chief that she smells something burning. No sign of smoke or fire. The residence has been evacuated.

UPDATE 8:13 a.m.: Burned out sump pump in the basement. The pump will be removed and the smoke cleared.

April 17, 2016 - 4:53pm
posted by Billie Owens in fire, byron, news.

An out-of-control brush fire is reporred at 6925 Transit Road, north of Route 262. Byron and South Byron fire departments are responding.

April 17, 2016 - 4:28pm
posted by Billie Owens in fire, Stafford, news.

An out-of-control brush fire is reported at 9309 Clipnock Road, Stafford. The location is between Sweetland and Torrey roads. Stafford Fire Department is responding.

April 12, 2016 - 9:13am
posted by Howard B. Owens in fire, news, bergen.

An oven fire is reported at 42 Rochester St., Apt. #15, Bergen.

Bergen fire and Le Roy's ladder truck are dispatched.

UPDATE 9:23 a.m.: Churchville was also dispatched, was canceled, but a minute later, they were already on scene, so the Bergen chief canceled his department's ladder truck. Le Roy can proceed non-emergency.

UPDATE 9:32 a.m.: Burnt food, ventilation in progress.

April 9, 2016 - 5:22am
posted by Howard B. Owens in fire, batavia, news.

City fire has responded to an automatic fire alarm in the basement of Building E at Park Site Manor Apartments, 541 E. Main St., Batavia.

On scene, a chief reports heavy smoke in a utility room.

Engine 11 and Ladder 15 have responded. No other units have been dispatched.

UPDATE 5:23 a.m.: The issue has been dealt with and the assignment is back in service.


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