WEST CLARKSVILLE — Volunteer firefighters from eight fire companies battled flames and frigid temperatures Thursday afternoon as fire destroyed a Weatherby Road home.
There were no injuries. The sole resident, who was at home at the time, escaped unharmed.
The fire was blamed on a wood stove, said Clarksville Fire Department Chief Mike Hayward. A plugged chimney started a fire in the wall, which dropped into the basement. The fire then shot up the outside wall and through the roof.
The report of the fire came into the Allegany County 911 Center at 12:39 p.m. It was not until after 5 p.m. that the last fire truck left the scene.
“I was the first on the scene, and flames were shooting out of the roof,” Hayward said. “The house is a total loss.”
Fifty firefighters from Clarksville, Cuba, New Hudson, Friendship, Richburg, Bolivar, Allen and Portville responded to the Allegany County Fire Service mutual aid call. Shinglehouse, Pa., firefighters stood by at Clarksville’s fire hall.
Tankers hauled water from a pond located about a mile from the scene. Clarksville’s fire hall is less than 1.5 miles from the scene of the fire.
Hayward said the American Red Cross was assisting the owner, who he could not immediately identify.
“I’m trying to get frozen fire hose back on the truck so we can get back into service,” Hayward said.
Temperatures hovered around the 10-degree mark at the time of the fire, and responders had to take precautions to avoid frostbite.
(Contact reporter Rick Miller at email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter, @RMillerOTH)