Maryland Firefighter Dies After Falling into Basement During House Fire

Officer calls mayday shortly after entry

Bill Carey
12 August 2021

IJAMSVILLE, Maryland – A Frederick County firefighter died on Wednesday evening after being injured during a house fire.

News of the incident was first reported on Facebook by Frederick Fire Wire of the fire in Ijamsville, northeast of Urbana. Subsequent posts were about the additional alarms for the RIT and Tanker Task Force, fire showing, and then the mayday.

Frederick County firefighters responded to the fire in the 9500 block of Ball Road shortly after 4:48 p.m. Captain Joshua Laird was on the first arriving engine, Engine 251, from the Green Valley firehouse. Shortly after arrival a working fire was confirmed and the RIT and Tanker Task Force were requested.

It is reported that after entry Captain Laird fell through the floor into the basement and transmitted a mayday.

The Frederick County Division of Fire & Rescue Services is a combination department composed of 500 uniformed personnel and hundreds of volunteers serving over 240,000 citizens across over 664 square miles.

The last line of duty death for the department was on 25 July 2019 when Libertytown firefighter Michael Powers suffered an heart attack while on the scene of a motor vehicle accident.

Captain Laird is the sixth firefighter to have been fatally stricken while inside a burning structure in 2021. The United States Fire Administration is currently listing the cause and nature of Laird’s death as “Unknown” while “Advancing Hoselines.”

Frederick County Division of Fire & Rescue Services
Frederick News Post: Firefighter dies battling Ijamsville blaze
NBC Washington: ‘Hero’ Maryland Fire Captain Killed While Battling House Blaze
WJLA: Maryland firefighter dies from injuries suffered in Ijamsville house fire
WTOP: Firefighter dies fighting blaze in Frederick County
WUSA9: Firefighter dies after two-alarm fire in Frederick County

Photograph courtesy of Frederick County Division of Fires & Rescue Services.

Published by Data Not Drama

Data Not Drama is writings that provide a point of critical thought about firefighter fatality data and education, line of duty deaths, and risk. The main focus is to encourage less risk aversion and better knowledge on the subject of firefighter fatalities in firefighters, fire departments, and fire service organizations.

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