Mayday cleared quickly during Magnolia house fire

Firefighters from Magnolia, Little Creek and Camden-Wyoming fire companies responded to a blaze in the 1100 block of West Birdie Lane in Magnolia on Sunday afternoon. (Submitted photo/Magnolia Volunteer Fire Co.)

MAGNOLIA — A mayday situation was declared after a Magnolia firefighter fell through a floor during a residential blaze Sunday afternoon, fire officials reported.

The mayday was cleared moments later after he was pulled from the basement of the home, the Magnolia Volunteer Fire Co. posted on its Facebook page Sunday.

The distress call was issued soon after entry into the home in the 1100 block of West Birdie Lane in the Jonathan’s Landing neighborhood, MVFC said.

Emergency medical services at the scene evaluated the firefighter, who did not require transport to the hospital, according to the MVFC.

Residents of the house were not home at the time of the blaze, reported at 3:55, the fire company said, although two dogs and a cat died in the fire.

No residents were home at the time of Sunday’s fire in the Jonathan’s Landing neighborhood. (Submitted photo/Magnolia Volunteer Fire Co.)

Besides Magnolia, Little Creek and Camden-Wyoming fire companies also responded to the structure fire call.

Smoke was coming from the home as the first firefighters arrived, and the post indicated that a handline water hose was used to make a forcible entry into the home.

The mayday distress call was issued soon after entry, MVFC said, adding that large amounts of smoke and heat were present at the time.

The fire was extinguished and overhauled in just over three hours.

The scene was turned over to the Delaware Fire Marshal’s Office. Attempts to reach the office Monday were not successful.

According to the MVFC via Facebook, mayday calls are rare and occur “maybe two or three at most in Delaware a year if that.

“A lot of causes of mayday’s in today’s modern day building construction and codes is due to lightweight construction, floors and roofs collapse a lot sooner then they did back in the day.”

Also, the MVFC said, “The state fire chiefs have developed a state wide mayday policy that works with the incident commander and the dispatch center and basically spells out all the information that either the dispatch center or the incident commander gathers from the downed firefighter.

“A RIT crew (rapid intervention team) sole purpose is to rescue a downed firefighter but in most mayday’s and in the case of yesterday’s the downed firefighter is pulled out by his/her fellow crew members on the hose line with them before the RIT even makes it inside.”