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Brookings mobile home lost in fire

Posted: Friday, Aug 26th, 2011

Brookings firefighters battle a mobile home blaze in Western Estates Wednesday afternoon. The fire is believed to have started on the home’s porch and spread inside, but an exact cause is not yet determined.

• Residents get out OK; two firefighters suffer minor injuries

Two residents made it out safely, but a Brookings mobile home was destroyed in a Wednesday afternoon fire at Western Estates.

The cause of the blaze, which sent two firefighters to the hospital for X-rays, is yet to be determined.

Deputy Fire Chief Pete Bolzer says firefighters were called to the scene at 12:42 p.m.

Bolzer says the fire started on the front porch at 208 Roundup Circle and rapidly moved into the mobile home. It’s a total loss.

The blaze is not suspicious and was likely accidental, Bolzer said. An investigation is ongoing by the fire department and an insurance company.

Two people were home at the time of the fire; they spotted and reported it. Other family members were at work at the time.

Strong northwest winds caused the flames to take off quickly into the structure.

Bolzer said there was also exterior damage to a detached garage next to the home, and a car parked in the driveway was also burned. The vehicle may be a total loss.

The deputy fire chief said a total value for all the damaged and destroyed property is yet to be determined.

Two male firefighters suffered sprains – one to an elbow and the other to a hand – while working at the fire. Only minor injuries were suspected, Bolzer said, and checking on the injuries at the hospital was a routine, precautionary measure.

Bolzer noted that the Brookings Fire Department faced some difficult challenges Wednesday. Besides trying to fight a fire on a windy day, the mobile home park does not have hydrants. That means the department volunteers had to haul water to the site.

But he said the firefighters did their jobs well, knocking down flames and controlling the fire quickly. While the mobile home is considered a total loss, part of the structure was still standing at the end of the day, and the garage was saved and can be repaired. No neighboring property was damaged.

“Usually there’s nothing left when we get to a mobile home fire that far involved. This time everything clicked; we hit hard and stopped the spread of the fire.

“I’m happy with the way the guys performed. They did an excellent job, saved a lot of property.”

Brookings Fire Chief Darrell Hartmann said firefighters were able to pull some personal items – such as photos and momentos that cannot be replaced – out of the home.

Firefighters were working at the scene until 4 p.m. Wednesday. Also assisting were Brookings Police and Brookings Ambulance.

The Brookings County Chapter of the American Red Cross is providing assistance to the mobile home residents.

Contact Jill Fier at jfier@brookingsregister.com.

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