Malfunctioning Fire Apparatus Blamed for Fire at Randolph (VT) Fire Station

A fire that tore through the headquarters of the Randolph Village Fire Department in Randolph, Vermont caused between $750,000 and $1-million in damage, according to an early estimate by a Vermont State Police fire investigator.

“It’s rather ironic that you have to go to a fire station for a fire investigation,” said Det. Sgt. Todd Ambroz of the Vermont State Police.

Ambroz ruled out arson, but said Tuesday afternoon the exact cause was unknown. He said the fire started in the cab of a 2011 rescue pumper truck parked inside the fire station.

“It could’ve been mechanical; it could’ve been an electrical issue,” Ambroz said.

Ambroz said the pumper had been out for training Monday night, but that Randolph Village’s volunteer firefighters told him they ended up returning the truck to the station and parking it, because it was malfunctioning. Ambroz said he was told an expert was expected to come to the fire station in the coming days to inspect the source of those malfunctions.

Randolph Village Fire Chief Jay Collette said he got the call at about 6:19 a.m. Tuesday that his own station was burning. He said initially, it took him a moment to process what he had just heard.

“I’m awe-struck right now,” Collette told necn. “Fire chiefs don’t want this in their own home. It’s a bad thing, obviously. But at the end of the day, we’ll deal with it. That’s what we do.”

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