On Sunday afternoon (February 9) a fire leveled an unoccupied White River Township home undergoing renovations.
Firefighters from the Montague Area Fire District and White Lake Fire Authority battled the blaze during a heavy snow storm which made visibility difficult.
Montague Area Fire District Chief Ron Anderson, while still on the scene during the mop up, said the home located in the 7100 block of Anderson Road was being renovated inside. The rural location was on a dead end of Anderson Road, west of Indian Bay Road. Tankers had to shuttle water from a hydrant located on Lamos Road/Old Channel Trail about a mile from the scene.
Chief Anderson said the fire, reported around 3:30 p.m., had exited the home’s roof as firefighters arrived on the scene. “Flames were through the roof when we arrived,” Anderson said. “It was probably 50 percent involved. In 10 minutes the center section was burned. It was totally destroyed.
The chief said Grant Township Fire Department was initially called for assistance, but when firefighters arrived they were called off because it was determined to be a defensive fight. “There was no room on the road for more fire trucks.”
Anderson said two Montague tankers and one White Lake tanker were used to shuttle water to the scene.
A large propane tank used to fuel the home’s heating system and two empty 100-pound propane tanks were near the home, but Anderson said water was sprayed on them to keep them from heating up and exploding. The chief said the smaller tanks were later found to be empty.
He said the home was burned to the ground. The cause of the fire was undetermined. “I’m waiting for the insurance investigator to come,” Anderson talked about the process of determining the cause.
The chief described the home as a one-story manufactured home with a detached garage. “They were in the process of drywalling the interior.”
Anderson said firefighters were cold and wet, but none were injured fighting the blaze.
The White Lake Ambulance Authority also assisted at the scene.