The Western Taney County Fire Protection District responded to a possible fire on Oct. 27 at the Ozark Mountain Family YMCA in Hollister.
Western Taney County Fire Chief Chris Berndt said, at 9:47 a.m., crews responded to reports of smoke in the building at the facility.
“It wasn’t in the open gym area, it was primarily in the offices. So we checked and it ended up, after quite some searching for it, that one of the furnaces had burned up and was filling the place up with smoke,” said Berndt. “The breaker to the furnace had tripped and shut the furnace off. It was electric or heat pump type unit. So it actually had stopped prior to us getting there.”
While the eventually discovered what was causing the smoke, Berndt shared that they initially also had another mystery on their hands.
“There was a room above the furnace area also that had filled up with some smoke, so it was a little confusing to us why we had smoke in two different areas,” Berndt said. “We were able to determine pretty quickly that it was not getting any worse, we just could not, for a while, figure out what was the cause of it. We found it to be a faulty furnace.”
Berndt said that there was no visible flames that they had to extinguish, but there was quite a bit of smoke.
“Once we were able to make sure the power was completely off and through natural ventilation we were able to get the smoke out,” said Berndt. “These heating related calls that is just the time of year that this kind of stuff happens. It’s good when people in question do call for help when they don’t know what’s going on with the heater. Normally proper maintenance and changing of filters can prevent a lot of that. As always it’s good to have good working smoke alarms in your house, so you are alerted if there is some kind of fire.”
Berndt added that there were no injuries.