House in Albert Lea catches firePublished 1:30pm Thursday, February 21, 2013
More than a dozen Albert Lea city and township firefighters responded to a fire in a home Wednesday evening on Swanhill Drive.
Firefighters were called to 1309 Swanhill Drive at 6:06 p.m. after receiving a call from one of the home’s owners who stated there was a fire in a bedroom at the residence, said Albert Lea Public Safety Director Dwaine Winkels. It is unclear how many people were home at the time.
No one was injured.
Albert Lea Fire Capt. Lee DeVries said when firefighters arrived at the home, they could see heavy smoke coming from the house, and in one of the rooms, the heat had broken the windows out and flames were billowing out.
He estimated there was fire damage in probably half of the main level, and the whole house sustained severe smoke damage. Though not much damage was visible from the front yard, the damage was visible from the back southeast corner of the home. He said firefighters had to pull a lot of the ceiling out in the home to reach smoldering insulation.
Winkels said the official cause of the fire is still unknown, though is likely a supplemental heating source contributed.
DeVries said fire investigators will be at the house today investigating.
He said all shifts were called in to help at the scene because of the initial information received by the first officer who arrived at the house.
“It turned out it was good we did,” he said. “We cycled through everybody. It took a lot of hands-on labor getting that insulation pulled through.”
Winkels said the home is owned by Dennis and Jo Lowe. Dennis works for the city of Albert Lea, and Jo is the executive director of the Arc of Freeborn County.
The family is being assisted by the Freeborn-Mower County chapter of the American Red Cross.