MANCHESTER NH – A firefighter suffered a medical emergency while fighting a fire Monday at 466 South Beech St.
The fire call came in at about 10:31 a.m. from a neighbor, who said she noticed smoke pouring from the windows shortly after arriving at her mom’s house, which is adjacent to the Beech Street property.
Felicia Kiefer had stopped by to pick up her daughter and help her mom get the pool ready.
“I saw smoke pouring out of the kitchen windows and they were popping and breaking,” Keifer said. “I could see flames in the second-floor windows.”
She said she told her mother to call 911 and that firefighters arrived quickly. But it wasn’t long before she realized one of the firefighters was in trouble.
Keifer said she saw the firefighter rushed out of the burning house by his fellow firefighters, who performed CPR on him.
Chief Dan Goonan said the veteran firefighter, Craig Ferry, 53, from Engine 9, went into cardiac arrest. He heard about it first while listening to the radio transmissions from the scene.
“Hearing a report that one of your guys is in cardiac arrest is quite concerning,” Goonan said. “You’re fearing the worst and hoping for the best.”
Goonan said the firefighter, whose name was not released, was rushed to Elliot Hospital and is in serious but stable condition.
Just before 11 a.m. the fire was called under control. According to District Fire Chief Jim Michael
The fire originated in the kitchen and extended to the rear porch. Engine 9 stretched a two-inch line to the rear entrance of the house while Engine 7 attached a back-up line through the entrance, quickly bringing the fire under control, Chief Michael said in his report.
Mayor Joyce Craig issued the following statement upon learning about the injured firefighter:
“Our thoughts are with the Manchester Fire Department firefighter, a 24-year veteran of the department, who suffered a cardiac arrest while battling a house fire on Monday.
Thanks to the quick actions of his fellow firefighters and a team from AMR that were on scene, he was treated and transported to the hospital, where he is now in stable condition.
It’s a stark reminder that firefighters and all first responders put their lives on the line every day to serve and protect our community, and for that I’m grateful.“
The cause of the fire was caused by an electrical malfunction. Chief Michael estimated the loss to the property at approximately $75,000.