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Quick action averts disaster

South Boston News
Fire consumed Mike and Julie Wells’ garage at 90 Goat Island Court on Sunday. (Joe Noah photo) / May 14, 2014

Firefighters from Clarksville, Boydton and Chase City responded to a fully involved garage fire at 90 Goat Island Court near Clarksville just after 11 a.m. Sunday.

According to neighbor Joe Noah, his wife Betty was working with her flowers on the back deck of their home next door when she heard an explosion. She looked up and saw a cloud of black smoke pouring out from her neighbor’s garage, Noah said of his wife.

Within minutes of the explosion, the garage was engulfed in flames.

While his wife Betty called 911, Noah started spraying around the fire with a garden hose. He was soon joined by other neighbors and a passing boater who came ashore to help battle the flames and keep them from spreading to Noah’s garage, which stands a mere 20 feet from the burning structure.

The damaged property, at 90 Goat Island Court in Merrifield Acres, is owned by Mike and Julie Wells.

“They use it as a vacation home,” said Noah, adding that the Wells had been at the house earlier in the day, but were returning to their home in Northern Virginia when the fire broke out.

The garage that burned is used by the couple to store their boats and jet skis. However, on Sunday, all three boats and both jet skis were down at the dock, away from the garage, said Noah.

Firefighters were able to douse the flames before they spread to the nearby house or Noah’s garage. It took a little over two hours for crews to extinguish the blaze. As of Monday, the county fire marshal had not determined the cause of the fire.

Noah said the side and roof of his garage sustained some damage from the blaze, although no structural damages. However, Wells’ garage is a total loss.

“We wish to praise and thank the volunteer fire departments (Clarksville, Boydton and Chase City) who participated in fighting the fire at 90 Goat Island Court on Mothers Day. The EMT was first on the scene followed soon by the fire trucks and the tanker from Boydton. And we wish to thank all our neighbors who came to help save our garage. The result was that no one was hurt and the homes at 90 and 86 (Goat Island Court) were saved,” Noah said.

Noah added a special thanks to the passing boater who ventured ashore to help out: “I don’t know who he is, but am grateful for his help, and would love to thank him in person for what he did.”

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