Blaze puts family out in the cold

By Rhonda Cooper

A family has been displaced from their home following a significant house fire at 726 Third Street East in Meadow Lake, Dec. 15.

Meadow Lake Fire and Rescue received the call just after 8 p.m. and the crew of 15 were on site until 10:15 p.m.

“The fire started on the deck and extended into the attic space,” said Fire Chief Neil Marsh. “There were four teenagers home at the time. They called 9-1-1 and got out, so there were no injuries.”

The crew knocked down the flames and then overhauled the area by tearing down the roof and checking walls to make sure the fire had not advanced into any other sections of the home. Marsh indicated considerable structural damage was caused in both the roof’s truss system and the east wall of the home. It is presently inhabitable.

The house, a unit owned by the Meadow Lake Native Urban Housing Authority, is one of 116 single family units in the city. MLNUHA had an open unit and the family had access to it by 5 p.m. Friday.

“Considering the vacancy rate, we just happened to have an open unit so we are able to accommodate the family in another unit,” said MLNUHA manager Burlene Laliberte.

“Houses are irrelevant,” she said. “I am glad the family is okay. It could happen to any one of us at any time and it makes us appreciate what we have.”

Laliberte contacted the authority’s insurance agent Friday morning and was hoping the adjustor would be on site as early as Monday or Tuesday.

“Depending on what the insurance adjustor says, it is Meadow Lake Native Urban Housing Authority’s intention to repair or replace the unit,” she said.

The Meadow Lake Fire and Rescue department has ruled the fire as accidental, possibly related to smoking outside. The fire crew did not encounter any surprises when containing the blaze.

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