The Kansas State Fire Marshal will investigate a blaze that left no one injured, but demolished a single-family home just south of Lawrence Tuesday afternoon.
Firefighters were dispatched to what was originally reported as a garage fire at 1122 E. 1264 Road at 2:56 p.m., and arrived minutes later at 3:03. Mike Baxter, chief of Consolidated Fire District No. 1, said that upon arriving, firefighters discovered heavy smoke coming from the soffits and roof vents.
Despite efforts by firefighters, the fire eventually moved from the garage to the living quarters of the home, gutting much of the interior and leaving only portions of the front façade and sides standing. Baxter said firefighters were able to retrieve a vintage vehicle from the garage and move it to a safer location.
Because of the extent of the damage, Black Hills Energy was called to the home Tuesday evening to shut off gas at the supply line. Workers also demolished additional portions of the home that had been structurally compromised by the fire.
“There were two very large brick and block chimneys that were showing signs of collapse during extinguishment efforts,” Baxter said. “For the safety of firefighters, an excavator was brought in to facilitate a controlled collapse.”
Firefighters remained on scene until just after noon Wednesday preventing the fire from rekindling and documenting the scene for further investigation by the fire marshal. Currently there has been no cause identified and no estimate of damages. Baxter said the Red Cross was on scene Tuesday providing services to the victims of the fire.
The home sits on 2.6 acres in the Oakwood Estates, about 1.5 miles south of the K-10 and U.S. 59 Highway/Iowa Street interchange.
Note: Baxter’s title was corrected after this article was published.