Fire Prevention 52: A Fire Ignites and Threatens to Claim a Historic NPS Structure

The staff of the NPS Structural Fire program learn about the history of The Wayside Home.
The staff of the NPS Structural Fire program learn about the history of The Wayside: Home of Authors, at Minuteman National Historical Park in Concord, Massachusetts.

At The Wayside: Home of Authors, in Minuteman National Historical Park, sparks from a welding operation ignited a fire on the exterior of the historic structure. However, quick action by employees effectively using a fire extinguisher stopped the fire in its earliest stages. Park staff were very lucky.

A fire was ignited as sparks from workers welding blew against the clapboard walls of a row house in Boston. The ensuing fire claimed the lives of two Boston firefighters. Though not an NPS example, this fire illustrates what can happen when simple fire prevention actions aren't taken, such as getting a hot work permit and following other fire prevention practices.

Fires that start as a result of hot work are common in the National Park Service and the private sector, especially during renovations. They are also very easy to prevent. Join us at Prevention 52 - Workplace Fire Hazards to get additional safety pointers on hot work and other workplace fire safety issues.

  • Protecting Cultural Resources from Fire
  • Seasonal Housing
  • Ashes Under Snow: Winterizing
  • Living History
  • Fire Safety for People with Disabilities
  • and more!

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Last updated: December 1, 2016