Fire Department Log By RICHARD BRENNEMAN

Tuesday August 02, 2005

Spontaneous ignition 

An alert homeowner averted a potential disaster last Tuesday when he caught a whiff of smoke and headed to his basement. 

Berkeley firefighters received the alarm at 9:83 p.m. and rushed a full assignment of firefighters and equipment to a home at 3225 Idaho St. 

By the time they arrived the homeowner had extinguished the blaze with a garden hose. 

The blaze began beneath a canvas tarp a contractor had used to cover paint, stains, varnishes and brushes, as well as a collection of paint- and stain-soaked rags wrapped in canvas, the results of a day of fence maintenance. 

The official cause of the fire is listed as spontaneous ignition of the improperly stored rags, something firefighters are constantly warning residents against. 

The fire was contained to the work supplies, causing no structural damage and only light smoke damage to the basement. 


Spoilt dinner 

Firefighters responding to a 9:33 p.m. fire in an apartment at 2441 Haste St. found that damage was limited to the dinner left cooking too long on the range.›