Center Hill, Atlanta
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Saturday, 11 February 1989 at 17:42 PM Company 38 rolled up to find roughly 1/2 of an abandoned “U” shaped one-story elementary school with fire through the roof. The old building, located at 2455 Bankhead Highway NW in the Center Hill neighborhood, had been vacant for several years and was for sale by the Board of Education. Vandals had stripped the building of wiring and piping and most of the windows were broken out. Many holes were punched in the plaster on wood lathe walls in the older portions of the building so fire moved very rapidly. The original building formed the bottom of the “U” and some tough firefighting saved the legs of the “U” due to the change in construction from the wood frame with brick veneer of the original building to block walls and a Tectum roof deck over the newer sections. The lack of wood in the roof design slowed the fire slightly and gave the responding companies time to get lines laid and make a stand. Eventually the incident grew to a Three Alarm Fire including Automatic Aid from Fulton County Company 11. Control was gained at 19:07 after two Ladder Pipes, four deluge guns and numerous hand lines were operated. Firefighter Fairus Elder of Company 16 injured a knee during overhaul operations. The remainder of the building was demolished leaving only a vacant lot at the site today.
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