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Fire guts house

Cary Ashby • Feb 9, 2018 at 9:00 PM

FITCHVILLE TOWNSHIP — Greenwich resident Brandon Oney was driving to work Friday morning when he noticed smoke coming from a rural New London home.

The New London Volunteer Fire Department received a call at 8:38 a.m. The crew received mutual aid from the Tri-Community Joint Fire District and Fairfield Volunteer Fire Department.

“The back corner of the house was on fire. It was all the way up through the attic,” said Brandon Oney, who called 9-1-1 and drove around to the back of the house.

The fire was at 1850 Ohio 162 near Fitchville.

“I went to the door and beat on it and beat on it and nobody answered. I tried the door; it happened to be open,” Oney said.

The Good Samaritan helped a teenage boy, believed to be about 16, and his beagle-mix dog out of the house.

“He wasn’t injured. He had no idea the house was on fire,” Oney said. “They were the only ones home.”

New London Volunteer Fire Chief John Chapin said there were two dogs at the house, but “they’re all fine.”

Once Oney got the boy situated in his truck, he said he started throwing snow on the house. About that time another man stopped by and started helping him until firefighters arrived.

“It was slowly going up the side of the house,” Oney said, referring to the flames. “The attic got out of control. Everyone was out at least.”

Chapin said the cause of the fire isn’t suspicious, but it started in a dog house on the outside northeast corner of the home. 

“He had a heat lamp in there for the dogs. … Something went wrong; I don’t know what it was,” the fire chief added. “It (the fire) burned on the ground and went up.”

Eventually, the flames reached the peak on the northeast corner of the house.

“You could see the fire was moving to the roadway,” Chapin said. “They made entry on the north side. There was no visible fire on the first floor.”

Firefighters encountered smoke until they reached the second floor when they saw flames at the attic entrance.

“It didn’t take long for it to get under control,” Chapin said.

As one crew was hosing down the inside of the house, the chief said other firefighters were attacking the blaze from the outside.

“The house is definitely repairable,” Chapin added. “The fire was contained to the east side of the house.”

Friday’s incident was the second house fire in two days for the New London crew.

Firefighters again requested mutual aid from Tri-Community and Fairfield for the blaze reported at 10:05 a.m. Thursday at 762 S. Exchange Road, New London. The two assisting agencies were called for tankers.

“We didn’t use them. The initial crew had it knocked down in a matter of minutes,” Chapin said. “The fire started in the kitchen area. … The fire was contained to (mostly) the kitchen area.

“It’s an elderly gentleman (who lives there) and he’s staying with one of his sons.”

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