By Rita Reith
Indianapolis (IN) firefighters responded Sunday to a massive fire that destroyed one home and damaged two others.
While en route to the scene, crews reported seeing heavy flames in the sky that could be seen for miles. Upon arrival, firefighters found an exposure house to the north in danger of full involvement.
While the main fire house faced imminent collapse, firefighters focused on the exposure house and a search for possible occupants. Forcing the door open, crews entered the home and found two occupants still sleeping. The occupants were told to evacuate immediately from their downstairs apartment. They grabbed their dog and left. Crews then went to the upstairs apartment where no one was home but did find two dogs which they removed and safely sheltered at the neighbor’s home. Additional searches of the home proved all clear however the home did sustaing significant damage to the upstairs.
Additional resources were brought to the scene as crews continued to extinguish the fire and fight hot spots from flaring, and command ordered units to rotate through the rehab sector. Neighbors report that the main fire house was vacant, possibly under renovation, and that apparently squatters had recently been in and out of the structure.
RITA L. REITH is a battalion chief with the Indianapolis (IN) Fire Department and serves as the agency’s public information officer.