Large Warehouse Fire in Vass
By Department Chief Mike Cameron
July 7, 2021

At approximately 4:30 am on Wednesday morning Cypress Pointe Fire/Rescue along with our First Alarm Automatic Aid Assignment was dispatched to 340 Seaboard Street in Vass for a structure fire. The First Alarm Assignment included: Cypress Pointe Fire/Rescue, Southern Pines Fire/Rescue, Whispering Pines Fire/Rescue and Moore County EMS.
The occupant and owner of this business is Carolina Crete and Pallet, a well known pallet manufacture with numerous contracts to supply pallets throughout the southeast. They have two locations in Vass and supply heavy duty shipping containers to other businesses.
The fire report from the first arriving units reported that they had heavy fire involvement on one end of a large warehouse with fire spreading throughout the building. Due to a large amount of combustible materials in the building and the rapid spread of the fire the incident commander immediately requested a 2nd Alarm Assignment for additional firefighters and tankers. The 2nd Alarm Assignment included: Crains Creek Fire Department, Carthage Fire Department, Aberdeen Fire Department and Seven Lakes Fire Department. Moore County Public Safety moved-up Robbins Fire Department and West End Fire Department to provide coverage in other districts while so many departments were on-scene of this large warehouse fire.

Cypress Pointe Engine 211 tied a fire hydrant and gained entry from the Seaboard Street side of the structure with a 2.5 inch attack line and was met with high heat that hampered their forward progress. At the same time CPFR Engine 221 tied a hydrant and laid supply line to the rear of the structure were they also utilized a 2.5 inch attack line and their deck gun for a direct attack on the fire area. Southern Pines Ladder 81 tied a hydrant on the north side of the building and also utilized their aerial ladder for direct attack on the fire. Southern Pines Engine 822 and all of the responding tankers were assigned supplemental water supply for Engine 221 because of the large volume of water needed could not be supported totally by fire hydrants in the area. As Engine 221 and Ladder 81 began to knock down the flames and reduce the heat it allowed Engine 211 to start making forward progress in the building and putting attack lines in place inside of the building to cut the forward progress of the fire off.

Moore County Public Utilities was contacted and they were able to increase water availability to this part of their water supply system by temporarily adjusting water valves to provide increased pressure and volume. The Moore County sheriff's Office and Vass Police Department closed the area off for a one block area in all directions.

Multiple crews were utilized to continue to extinguish hot spots through out the building, remove smoke and continue to supply water. Moore County EMS established a Firefighter Rehab area to evaluate health and safety of the interior firefighters as they rotated out of the hazard area. Due to the large fire volume and the structure being just over 98,000 square feet this was considered a long duration event with the last fire suppression units clearing the scene around 3:30 p.m. The Town of Vass and Vass Police Department furnished breakfast and lunch for all of the responders.

The cause of the fire is being investigated by multiple agencies, to include: Moore County Public Safety, Vass Police Department, Office of the State Fire Marshal and the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation.

This response included 47 response personnel and multiple apparatus that utilized a coordinated fire attack to bring this major fire under control without allowing fire spread to adjacent structures or neighborhoods, and without any significant injuries to the public or firefighters.