Two families displaced by firePublished 11:32am Monday, January 28, 2013
A house fire Friday morning at 708 South Oak Street in Fergus Falls caused moderate damage to the main floor kitchen, and considerable smoke damage throughout the structure.
There were two rental units in the home. The first floor was occupied by a father and three children, and two adults and two children lived upstairs.
No one was home at the time of the fire, except a dog. Firefighters were able to get the dog out safely, and the dog is in good condition.
The two families are no longer able to occupy the home. The American Red Cross dispatched a team to meet with the families Friday.
“We go in and talk to the families to see what they need, and make sure they have a place to stay,” said Brian Shawn, Regional Communications Officer for the American Red Cross. “We have agreements with hotels so we can provide a place for people for a few days or longer if needed. We make sure they have food, and usually provide a gift card so they can buy toiletries and basic necessities.”
Shawn added that the level of support depends on the needs of the family and the severity of the disaster.
Tony Neville at the Fergus Falls firehouse said a total of four trucks and 31 firefighters responded to the blaze, as well as several police units who secured the scene, an ambulance, two Otter Tail Power trucks and a Great Plains Natural Gas vehicle.
The cause of the fire is still under investigation, but it is thought to have started in the kitchen around the stove, and is not considered to be suspicious.