On a day when it was already conducting live fire training exercises, Barrow County Emergency Services had an eventful day Sunday, Oct. 17, responding to both a train collision in Winder that injured one person and a house fire in Auburn before the day was over.

According to a BCES news release, crews responded early Sunday afternoon to the train versus tractor trailer collision on Atlanta Highway at the Bankhead Highway crossing and found the tractor portion of the vehicle on its side with a small diesel leak while the trailer portion was lying its side several feet down Atlanta Highway.

One person was transported to a local hospital, according to the release, while the crossing arm was also torn off as a result of the collision. Crews remained on the scene for several hours clearing it.

Then, just before 6 p.m., crews responded to the house fire in the 100 block of County Line-Auburn Road and found the two-story home fully engulfed in flames and smoke, according to the release. No one was at home during the time of the fire, officials said.

“Shortly after arrival, crews noticed the entire second floor shift do to fire damage of the floor joists,” said Capt. Scott Dakin. “We had received confirmation that no one was home at the time of the fire, and it was too much risk involved to send firefighters in to the house to fight the fire.”

The cause of the fire is under investigation by the BCES Fire Investigation Team.

“There was a lot happening throughout the day and I am so proud of the men and women of this department who handle days like this with such professionalism,” said BCES chief Alan Shuman. “From the 911 Communication Team to the Fire Operations Team, they all worked together to handle every call for help that came in, and produced the best possible solutions in the emergencies they encountered. We have some of the best working in our department and Sunday was just another day where we showed that.”


Prior to those calls, BCES had wrapped up a weekend of professional development fire training exercises with a live session Sunday morning in the Braselton area

“This was planned for and we were able to look at flow paths and fire growth in some very unique ways,” Dakin said. “This also started what would be a very busy day for the firefighters on shift that day.”


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