- Associated Press - Tuesday, July 28, 2015

July 28—Firefighters battled a fire at a house on Eighth Street Monday night that appeared to have started when a tree limb fell and knocked down a power line, causing arching that spread to the home.

According to Ames Fire Department Deputy Fire Chief Richard Higgins, firefighters were called to the house at 114 Eighth St., just west of Duff Avenue, late Monday afternoon with a report of a downed power line. Upon arrival, they sprayed water around the area that was sparking and catching fire to keep it from spreading.

Once city electrical crews arrived they were able to disconnect power, and firefighters were able to finish extinguishing the fire, which had spread from the lower level to the attic.

Firefighters used axes and chainsaws to remove siding from the house to get inside the wall, which was smoldering. No flames were visible. While firefighters worked in an alley along the house’s west side, others went inside to ventilate smoke from the house.

Higgins said that while the west side of the building was primarily damaged, the entire house suffered smoke damage.

The home’s owner, Peter Hallock, said he was home at the time on the other side of the house when the lights suddenly went out and heard an arching sound coming from outside.

“I thought it was one of the transformers on one of these poles in the alley,” Hallock told the Ames Tribune outside of his home Monday night. “I looked out the kitchen window there, and I couldn’t see the actual sparking, but I could see the lights flashing and I knew it was right outside the house.”

Hallock, the only resident of the house, was on his to a Fareway grocery store just before the incident occurred.

“It just happened that I was still here,” he said. “It would have been a real shock, an even bigger shock, if I came back to this.”

Hallock wasn’t hurt.

The Nevada Fire Department was called in to assist.

Eighth Street between Duff and Douglas avenues was blocked off, but curious onlookers made their way down the street, standing on the sidewalk to see what was happening.


(c)2015 the Ames Tribune, Iowa

Visit the Ames Tribune, Iowa at www.amestrib.com

Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.


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