Columbia Township Fire Department plans to train this evening (Tuesday 11/14) at Clark Lake, about 6 pm.  They are taking advantage of structures about to be torn down in the 8800 area of North Shore.  Fire Chief Scott Cota says the training session will use the department’s fog machine to simulate smoke.  He adds that the fog produced is white in color and is non-toxic.  “The training session gives fire fighters practice at room search patterns, victim searches, thermal imagining, ventilation techniques, radio communications, and hose laying.”  Fire departments from Liberty, Napoleon and Somerset may join the session.

This website’s Spirt Cam is currently focused on the front of the structures, and will remain so during the training and the teardown that will occur at another time.  You can find 24/7 live views of the lake from the Spirit Cam and DamCam on the main page of this website.

General area of the training as depicted on Google Maps.

Commenting about the training session, Chief Cota believes residents should also be prepared.  He suggests a “bug-out bag” filled with essentials in the event a hasty departure is required.  “Many people have trouble navigating inside their own dwelling when blinded by smoke.  A practice run is a good idea.”

Columbia Township Fire Chief Scott Cota

The Snay family had only seconds to leave their Vining Street home on December 30, 2020.  As this website reported, the Snay’s were sitting in the living room when the flames first appeared near the Christmas tree.  There was no time to collect belongings as fire spread rapidly and smoke engulfed the dwelling.  Todd and Beth Snay watched the flames consume their home from a neighbor’s porch, across the street.  The couple, their son Jonathan, and two dogs were able to evacuate safely.

This video recalls the frightening scene that Wednesday evening.

First report on the fire:  Fire Destroys House at Clark Lake – Clark Lake Spirit Foundation

This update also includes some historical facts of the neighborhood:  Vining Street House Fire Update – Clark Lake Spirit Foundation

How Clark Lake responded:  Snay Family Update – Clark Lake Spirit Foundation