Three-alarm blaze destroys cottage at Hyatt

Submitted to Dorchester Banner/Neck District VFD
The Cambridge House at the Hyatt Resort was destroyed by fire in the early morning Sunday.

CAMBRIDGE — At 6:06 a.m. on Sunday, Dorchester Central dispatched units for a working structure fire at the Hyatt Resort. Based on information provided, Chief 1 Adam Pritchett requested a second and third alarm while en route and arrived to find the structure 100 percent involved.

Chief Pritchett established command and had the first arriving Engine (E1-3) extinguish and take the hydrant in front of the structure. Tower 1 was placed to set up for master stream operation with Engine 1-2 supporting from a secondary hydrant.

The second and third alarms brought in extra personnel and equipment to assist in extinguishing this fire, which was placed under control at 9:52 a.m. with all units clearing the scene without incident. Chief Pritchett turned the scene over to the Maryland State Fire Marshal’s Office for investigation.

Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay General Manager Joel Bunde released a statement Sunday, saying, “The safety and security of our guests and colleagues is a top priority at Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay. We can confirm that an isolated fire occurred in the early morning, in a free-standing cottage next to the hotel that is used for small meetings. Hotel guests and colleagues were immediately evacuated, and local authorities arrived on the scene to swiftly extinguish the fire. There were no injuries and the hotel only sustained damage to the 1,400 square-feet cottage as well as a small number of vehicles parked in the parking lot behind the building. Following an inspection by local authorities, guests and colleagues were cleared to return and the hotel continues to operate as usual.”

No injuries were reported.

The Office of the State Fire Marshal reported Monday that the preliminary cause of the fire was accidental, after the “careless discard of smoking materials” in an exterior mulch bed. No arrests had been made by early Monday afternoon.

RFC units involved were Chief 1, Chief 1-1, Chief 1-2, Engine 1-3, Tower 1, Engine 1-2, Engine 1-4, Rescue 1 and Brush 1. Mutual aid was provided by Cambridge Police Department, Dorchester County Emergency Medical Services PM100 and 101 (Cambridge), Dorchester Stations 6 (Hurlock), 16 (Secretary), 31 (Neck District), 46 (Church Creek), Talbot Stations 20 (Oxford), 30 (Trappe), 40 (St. Michaels), 50 (Cordova), 60 (Easton), Caroline Station 200 (Preston), Wicomico Station 5 (Hebron), 14 (Sharptown) and the Maryland State Fire Marshal’s Office.
The Fire Marshal reported that 100 firefighters participated in the response, taking an hour to control the blaze.

“The officers and members of Rescue Fire Company, Inc. would like to thank all the fire departments that came out to assist in extinguishing this fire,” a statement from RFC said.

Gratitude was felt by members of the public, as well.

“Thank you for all you do, and saving the beautiful Hyatt,” Cheryl Ruff wrote on RFC’s social media site. “Respect.”

EDITOR’S NOTE: RFC Firefighter Kevin Carr contributed to this article.

Dave Ryan is editor of the Dorchester Banner. He can be reached at dryan@newszap.com.

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