Trish Bennett, Editor
ASHVILLE – Six fire departments descended on Ashville overnight to battle a stubborn blaze on Cromley Street in the village.
According to Chief Eric Edgington, Harrison Township Fire Department, the cause of the fire appears to be electrical, but the scene remains under investigation.
He said the tenant of the two-story home reportedly smelled smoke about 10:30 p.m. Sunday but could not find the source of the smell. When the smoke became visible, all five residents evacuated and called for help.
“We believe it started in the basement and worked its way up the walls,” Edgington said. “That’s why they couldn’t find the fire, because it was inside the walls until it reached the void spaces in the upper levels and attic.”
He said the age and construction of the house made it difficult to reach the blaze, and it took several hours to bring it under control.
“The way those old houses are built, it makes it very difficult,” Edgington said. “We had fire on the first and second floor and in the attic, and it was just so hard to get to. We had several times where it would transition, and we’d go in and try to knock it down, but then it would push us back out. We were finally able to get it about 4 a.m.”
Edgington said the frigid temperatures also did not help the situation, but the crews working the pumps did an excellent job.
“We had a lot of ice around the house, but fortunately we didn’t have any trips or falls,” he said. “No one got hurt, so we were good there.”
Edgington said the fire caused extensive damage to the house, burning through the roof and through the floor from the basement to the first floor.
He said the American Red Cross is providing assistance to the family that was dislocated by the blaze.
Crews assisting Harrison Township at the scene were Scioto Township, Rickenbacker, Circleville, Pickaway Township and Clearcreek Township, he said. Box65, the scene support auxiliary unit, also assisted firefighters at the scene.
This article originally appeared on The Pickaway News Journal