At 8:51 pm on Friday April 13th, Jefferson County Fire Control received several Fire Alarm Activations and dispatched Fire EMS and Police agencies to the General Brown CSD Bus Garage located 17704 Cemetery Road in Dexter NY. First fire units reported heavy smoke conditions coming from the bus garage and requested mutual aid from other fire depts.
The garage, which contained 20 of the 23 of the district's buses was hard to gain entry to because the overhead electric doors were unable to function. Upon cutting and gaining entry through the overhead doors, they discovered 2 school buses on fire as well as heavy smoke conditions. The fire was declared under control in about 1 hour.
Fire investigators from Jefferson County and the NY State Office of Fire Prevention and Control determined that the fire started as an electrical short in a 2005 Freightliner Thomas School Bus and spread to the bus next to it.
School Officials say that the remaining buses will have to be professionally cleaned and inspected by the NYS Dept of Transportation Inspectors before being back in service. Surrounding districts have offered to loan buses to General Brown CSD but they have chosen to lease 24 buses which 14 will be from Matthews Buses in East Syracuse NY and the other 10 will be from Birnie Bus Service Inc. in Rome NY for 30 days.
All routes will be on time Monday but the buses just won't say General Brown CSD on them. There were no injuries from this incident.