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Firefighters respond to house fire amid COVID-19 pandemic: 'It’s business as normal'

Posted at 12:58 PM, Mar 31, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-31 13:05:47-04

HANOVER, Va. -- Firefighters battled flames in a Hanover neighborhood Tuesday morning, when a wood working shop with an attached garage, caught fire.

Firefighters responded to the 911 call and quickly got the fire under control, but the wood shop was all but destroyed.

CBS 6 crews caught video of the structure engulfed on Caleb Drive. The smoke was visible for miles.

Hanover Fire Captain, Blake Stephens, said crews got the call around 8:30 in the morning, and when they arrived, they saw flames coming through the roof.

Fortunately, no one was inside, and no one was hurt.

The homeowner, who lives next door with their family, was home at the time, but the house itself was not damaged.

Stephens said the COVID-19 pandemic has not changed much about how crews are attacking fires.

"Our normal response to fire calls has not changed. It’s business as normal. We’re out here to answer the calls when anyone calls 911," said Stephens. "We go back and disinfect our breathing apparatus to protect between shifts. That’s a change in house. But as far as the community, business as normal. If they dial 911 for a fire, we’re going to be here for them.”

Stephens said the biggest change is on the EMS side, where you’ll see more personal protective equipment when responding to sickness calls.

Crews had the fire under control by 9 a.m.

The cause of Tuesday’s fire is still being investigated.