Fairfield Ledger

Mt. Pleasant News   Wash Journal
Neighbors Growing Together | Mar 22, 2018

Fire destroys trailer

By Andy Hallman, Ledger news editor | Feb 16, 2018
Source: PHOTO COURTESY OF PAUL DELISLE Firefighters battle the blaze at 414 S. 14th St. Thursday night in Fairfield. The building was a total loss.

A fire engulfed a mobile home in Fairfield Thursday night, though no one was home at the time and no injuries were reported.

The fire occurred at 414 S. 14th St. at about 8:40 p.m. That’s when the Fairfield Fire Department received calls from neighbors who reported hearing a loud bang and flames coming from the west side of the trailer.

Firefighters arrived a few minutes later, but the fire had spread so quickly there was no chance of saving the trailer.

“When I arrived, the trailer was fully engulfed,” said Fairfield Fire Chief Scott Vaughan. “It only takes about 10 minutes for a trailer to become fully engulfed” because of the materials it’s made of.

The fire was controlled by 9:30 p.m., and the firefighters were back at the station by 11:30 p.m.

The trailer belongs to Tina LaCoca. She and her son, Matthew, who also lives there, work at Pizza Hut. They had gone home during a break about an hour before the fire, but they were both at work when it was reported.

Don Hoelting owns the lot LaCoca’s trailer sits on. She told him she had nowhere to go after the fire, so Hoelting let her stay in a trailer next door that he owns. He had just cleaned it in preparation for a new tenant who will move in later this month, but since the tenant has not arrived yet, Hoelting was willing to let LaCoca stay there.

“She might as well stay there until she figures out what to do,” Hoelting said. “She had a lot of friends and neighbors around here consoling her. It’s got to be really hard.”

Hoelting said the fire burned so hot that it melted the skirt on his own trailer. The trailer that burned is a total loss, and Hoelting said it will have to be torn down. He said LaCoca did not have insurance on it.

Vaughan said the fire department informed the American Red Cross that LaCoca and her son needed assistance.

“If they don’t have a place to stay, the Red Cross puts people up in a motel for a night or two, and gives them vouchers for clothing and possibly food,” he said. “I also told [LaCoca] about the African Violet Foundation to get clothing, because she lost everything in the fire.”

The African Violet Foundation is a local nonprofit that helps students and families. The foundation holds Caring Through Clothing events, with the most well-known event held on Black Friday each year. Free clothing is given away to those who need it.

LaCoca told Hoelting she had a dog and a cat that were inside the trailer at the time of the fire, though it was unclear as of press time if the animals had been accounted for.

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