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Cigarette started Groveland house fire

May 25, 2012

0525-ll-groveland house fire /no photo

BLACKFOOT—Fire investigators have determined that the cause of a house fire North of Groveland (416 W. 280 N) on Tuesday afternoon was from a cigarette left on the deck.
"This is very unfortunate," said Blackfoot Fire Chief Kevin Gray. "Due to the high winds that day (gusts up to 50 mph) and the lightweight construction of the house it was a difficult fire to put out."
Gray said fire fighters responded to the fire in about 10 minutes of receiving the 911 call but that the attic was already in flames when they arrived. "That house was designed to burn fast," he added.
While fire fighters from Blackfoot, Firth and Fort Hall responded to the blaze, and fought for nearly five hours, homeowner Cheryl Spiegel expressed some dissatisfaction about the amount of time it took to get adequate water to the blaze and that there are no fire hydrants on the road.
Gray said that when people build houses outside of city limits they need to know that their insurance is based on 'no hydrants' for fire protection.
"We arrived at the scene with 4,000 gallons of water," Gray said. "That's what you would get from any other place in the state in this type of situation."
Although the home and most of its contents were a total loss, thankfully - no one was injured except the family cat who was unable to be rescued from the burning house. Damages are estimated to be around $300,000.

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