Wednesday, March 20, 2013
Firefighters from Moncks Corner and Whitesville Fire Departments battled late into Friday night when a shed caught fire around 9 p.m. and burned.
Flames could be seen roaring as high as 30-feet into the night sky, fanned by high winds and dry timber, sweeping through the woods adjacent to the Berkeley High School campus.
The wooden shed located behind the home of Royce Droce at 137 West Street in Moncks Corner caught fire, and it raged for more than 30 minutes before firefighters could contain the blaze.
Fans leaving the Berkeley – Stratford softball game at next-door Berkeley High School noticed the fire burning in the woods bordering Law Road across the street from the BHS campus and called 911. Within minutes units from MCFD and WFD arrived on the scene to fight the out-of-control blaze.
“This is a perfect example of the automatic aid agreement between Moncks Corner and Whitesville fire departments working,” said MCFD Chief David Miller. “Instead of one engine and six firefighters we had two extra engines and more than 10 firefighters on the scene.”
The fire, fueled by dry conditions and high winds threatened to consume the heavily wooded area surrounding West Street and Law Street which borders BHS.
“We were able to get in here quickly and contain the fire,” Miller said as crews remained on the scene into Saturday morning.
Droce said he and his wife had just returned home from a family gathering around 8:30 p.m. and noticed nothing amiss.
“We went outside to take care of the cat and my wife was out there and we didn’t see anything,” he said. “I was back outside around (8:50) and there I didn’t see anything wrong then either.”
Droce said shortly after 9 p.m. neighbors were pounding on his door telling him his shed was on fire. “It went up that fast,” he said.
According to Droce, lost in the fire were a boat, two golf carts, and a new scooter.
Miller said the cause of the fire had yet to be determined. “We won’t know what caused the fire until we’ve had a chance to poke around in there and see what happened,” he said.
The fire came on the heels of a Red Flag Weather Alert issued by the South Carolina Forestry this weekend due to dry, warm and windy weather increasing the danger of fire throughout the state.
On Saturday, firefighters battled brush fires in Cross that consumed more than 20-acres of land. It started due to debris burning, according to the forestry commission website.