A March 3 explosion and fire devastated the Friendly Garden Apartments on Lyttonsville Road in Silver Spring, causing serious injuries, displacing more than 150 residents, and destroying multiple apartments. Many evacuated carrying very little or nothing.

So far the community’s generosity has been overwhelming, with over $495,000 donated and distributions to affected families underway, according to Montgomery Housing Partnership (MHP).

“It may seem like a lot, but there are many families that are impacted and some of those families lost everything. They literally lost everything.” explained MHP President Robert Goldman in an interview with Fox 5.

You can donate to provide relief to these families as they stabilize and try to move forward.  Funds are needed for transportation, clothing, supplies for children, and other essential items.

MHP is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. Our tax ID is 52-1631939. Your donation to the Lyttonsville Fire Fund is tax-deductible to the extent allowed by law. They also ensure that 100% of the donated funds will go to families impacted by the fire.

Anyone interested in donating, may do so at this link.



Montgomery County Fire and Rescue units were called to the Kentlands neighborhood in Gaithersburg to respond to a vehicle fire adjust before 10am this morning.

The vehicle, which is described as a “trash truck”, was found on fire and it was quickly extinguished by firefighters.

The fire occurred in Kentlands Square in the area of Lowe’s , according to MCFRS PIO Pete Piringer. There were no injuries and it’s unknown why the fire started at the moment.


2pm Update: Firefighters have extinguished the vehicle fire, 5 cars damaged by fire.

There are approximately 50 firefighters on the scene at a Downtown Silver Spring parking garage at 801 Ellsworth Drive near Fenton Street and Roeder Rd due to several cars being on fire in the garage.

As of 1:46pm, firefighters knocked down most of the fire(s), but there is still heavy smoke in the area, according to MCFRS PIO Pete Piringer.

The garage is being searched and evacuated, but no injuries have been reported. Many surrounding streets are currently closed.

No word yet on the cause of the fire(s).

Photo courtesy of IG user @J3ssicarabbit__


Approximately 85 firefighters were on the scene at Sabbath Ct. in the Goshen/Laytonsville area for a 2 alarm fire at approximately 4am this morning, according to MCFRS PIO Pete Piringer. PTemperatures were at about 19°.

All occupants were able to get out of the two story home. Firefighters were met with a heavy fire upon arrival. The fire extended from the basement through the roof of the split foyer home and fire crews were able to knock the bulk of the fire out by about 5:10am.

By 6am there were still a few hotspots, and Goshen Road remained closed in the area of Lochaven Drive between Brink Rd and Warfield Rd.



Updated on Friday, January 28th with additional information.

Montgomery County Fire and Rescue Services responded to a 2-alarm fire on Carousel Court in the area of Girard Street in Gaithersburg at approximately 4pm today (Thursday, January 27th), according to MCFRS PIO Pete Piringer.

Upon arrival, firefighters were met with heavy fire conditions at a middle of the row townhouse that required approximately 25 MCFRS units and 100 firefighters. The fire likely started due to an HVAC malfunction (aluminum and copper wiring) in the basement and extended to the neighboring townhomes.

All occupants of the home were able to escape without injury and the bulk of the fire was able to be knocked out by about 4:45pm. One firefighter did sustain a non life threatening injury. At least four adults and four children have been displaced and damage of approximately $700k has been incurred ($500k structure, $200k contents).

A GoFundMe has been started for one of the families affected by the fire.


A fire on the 2600 block of Harris Avenue in Wheaton required approximately 65 firefighters early this morning, according to MCFRS PIO Pete Piringer.

The initial dispatch was at 2:30am for a heavy fire at a 2-story home in Wheaton. Four occupants were able to get out without injuries, but the family dog, which was located on the second floor, did not survive.

By 2:53am, the majority of the fire had been knocked down as crews looked for possible extensions of the fire.  The fire was completely extinguished by 3:22am.

At the moment firefighters do not know the exact cause of the fire, but the origin has been narrowed down to a small refrigerator, TV, space heater (air/fan type) & possibly other items all plugged in. The family of four has been displaced and there is an estimated $275K in damages.


A 2-alarm at 8800 Garland Ave off of Piney Branch Road in Silver Spring required approximately 85 firefighters, according to MCFRS PIO Pete Piringer.

The fire occurred on two levels of the 4-sorry garden style apartments and required multiple rescues as the fire was being extinguished in 15° temperatures.

No word on any injuries as residents are being moved to the neighborhood library for shelter.

Video and photo sent in by Instagram user @dopepancakes


Montgomery County Fire and Rescue units were called to 199 Rollins Ave in Rockville earlier this evening for a 2-Alarm fire.

According to MCFRS PIO Pete Piringer, the fire started when a piece of burning paper that was used to light a candle was improperly discarded into a wicker trash can on the fifth floor of the 8-story Bethany House senior apartment complex.

The fire was under control soon after the arrival of MCFRS units. Heavy smoke came from the apartment and lighter smoke eventually reached other floors in the building. Several residents, many with mobility issues, were initially evacuated from the building.

Two residents sustained non-life threatening injuries and there was about $35k in damages to the apartment. Four people were displaced.


Montgomery County Fire and Rescue units were called to a fire at 1700 Rockville Pike, Halpine Road.

The fire, which caused smoke to be visible from outside of the garage, started on a rubbish pile on the second level of parking garage.

Sprinklers were activated and there was heavy smoke with a possible extension of the fire into attached areas.

As of 1:15 the fire was out and crews were working to manage sprinklers and smoke, according to Battalion Chief Steve Mann. There were no injuries.


Chief Spokesperson for Montgomery County Fire and Rescue Services Pete Piringer tweeted today that Mauro Anderson Rodrigues, 44, has been arrested and charged in connection to several arson fires.

Rodrigues was arrested for several crimes including setting two ATMs on fire at a Bank of America on University Blvd W, attempting to ignite a Mercedes-Benz on fire on Tenbrook Dr, and attempting to ignite a dispensing fuel nozzle at a Shell gas station on Georgia Ave on 12/27, as well as igniting a fire while pouring gasoline from the pump onto the ground at the Sunoco Gas Station at 8384 Colesville Rd on 12/28.

The fire at the Sunoco included damaged a car (fueling at pump) and damaged fuel station (2 pumps) and store, resulting in over $100,000 in damages.

Piringer also said that Rodrigues was arrested and released on 12/27 in DC for Assault of Police Officer, Leaving scene of Collision, Speeding/Reckless Driving, DUI & Fleeing from Law Enforcement Officer.

An anonymous source provided info to MCFRS leading to the arson arrest.

Update: The cause of this fire is believed to be arson. An investigation is underway. ARSON Tip Line 240.777.2263 – Anyone with information regarding the vehicle fire at Sunoco Gas Station, Colesville Rd or any other suspicious/malicious fire CONTACT @MCFRS Fire/Explosive Investigators at 240.777.2263 or contact your local police

A vehicle caught on fire at the Sunoco gas station on Colesville Road and East West Highway in Silver Spring just before 7:30am this morning, according to Montgomery County Fire and Rescue PIO Pete Piringer.

The fire involved the vehicle, gas pump, and extended to the outside of the Food Mart (part of the gas station building). There were no injuries, and the fire was under control soon after the arrival of fire crews as the gas station attendant was quick to shut the pump off prior to the arrival of the fire department.

All lanes are now open after a couple were shut down for approximately an hour after the fire.

Photos tweeted by MCFRS Pete Piringer via Source of the Spring


The driver of the car that crashed into a building that is home to several commercial businesses (commercial limo company, spiritual healer, etc.) in Damascus has died, according to Fox 5.

The crash occurred at approximately 11pm last night on Main Street in Damascus, sparking a 2-alarm fire that required about 80 firefighters last night.

Temperatures were at approximately 28° with the Real Feel temperature at 21°, which made for icy roads in the area, according to MCFRS PIO Pete Piringer.

Investigators are still working to determine exactly what led up to the crash.

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