A fire alarm that came in just after midnight turned into a lengthy, two-alarm battle in subfreezing temperatures for Waco firefighters Thursday morning, with the written fire report putting the total loss from the fire at $700,000.
The initial alarm for the fire at 11400 Maple Shade Drive came in at one minute after midnight, with the first units arriving eight minutes later to find flames burning around the chimney and surrounding roof.
Firefighters made their way to the second story of the home to find poor visibility and a rapidly growing fire.
The report says they successfully got a line into an upstairs room, but found the fire had gotten behind them and was coming from the heating and air conditioning vents.
At that time all crews inside the house withdrew for safety.
Some property was removed from the house as other firefighters worked to suppress the flames.
A second alarm was called and crews were rotated to fight the fire.
A total of nine trucks and thirty firefighters were eventually on the scene.
All occupants were safely out of the house as firefighters began making headway against the fire, much of which was in the upper floor, attic and ceiling area.
The report indicates that attempts to use a ladder to gain access to the chimney were hindered by what the report termed ” the roof geometry”.
The battle to contain the fire and put out remaining hotspots went on for hours, with units still on the scene until the last left at 5:23 a.m.
The report put estimated loss to the property at $450,000 and loss to contents at $250,000.
The written fire report listed the ” cause of ignition” as ” failure of equipment or heat source” with the attic listed as area where the fire started and under “factors contributing to ignition”, design.