Local firefighters battled flames at a Brazil residence late Friday night after persons at a gas station reported a house fire, the second in as many days to ignite in the area.
Volunteers from Van Buren Township were called to the single-story house at 588 E. U.S. 40 at 10:10 p.m. Smoke filtered out of the northeast side of the home situated on the south side of the roadway three houses east of The Freeze. The smoke thickened outside as additional firefighters arrived on scene, donning protective gear and handling equipment in the front yard before going through the front door and around the home's east side. While scanner traffic indicated flames were visible from the burning structure, none were apparent from the west side of the house.
Down the street, two firefighters tapped into the water hydrant on the west side of Casey's General Store, where someone had called earlier to report the fire.
Traffic was narrowed to two lanes on U.S. 40 in front of the home, where fire vehicles were parked. Trans-Care ambulance personnel were also at the scene. At approximately 11:15 p.m., scanner traffic indicated a female resident was suffering from smoke inhalation.
Meanwhile, law enforcement officers from the Brazil Police Department were stationed at either end of the site, directing motorists traveling on National Avenue. Traffic control concluded at approximately midnight, and firefighters continued to douse the blaze.
The cause of the fire, the extent of damage and other details were not available at presstime.
Pam Bright, Public Information Officer at the Indiana Fire Marshal's Office, told The Brazil Times Friday that the cause of a Thursday structure fire had not yet been determined but was being investigated. She explained that investigations by the fire marshal are routine for departments not large enough to hire their own investigators.
Area firefighters from Van Buren, Jackson, Posey, Cory, Poland and Center Point departments were called to Thursday's fire at the Ken and Tina Michael residence, 8245 N. CR 200 E, at approximately 5 p.m. Trans-Care, Clay County Search and Rescue and Air Evac were also on hand.
A number of firefighters sustained minor injuries, according to scanner traffic, in what was originally reported as a garage fire. No residents were injured, but a severe backdraft, or explosion, knocked one firefighter from his perch on a ladder where he was extinguishing flames from above. The force caused the doors to rip away from the structure as glass shards from the shattered windows rained down on the scene.
While no information as to the residents of the home at 588 E. U.S. 40 was available early Saturday morning, persons interested in donating items to the Michael family may call Pat Rader at 812-986-2871 for further information.