Bellefontaine Examiner

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UDATE: Fire heavily damages home

Firefighters from three departments responded Thursday afternoon to a fully-engulfed house fire at 6396 S. County Road 5.

The West Liberty Fire Department was called to the residence, which is located about three miles southwest of Zanesfield, about 5:10 p.m., Chief John Esch said.


Tri-Valley and West Liberty firefighters work to extinguish a blaze Thursday at 6396 S. County Road  5, Bellefontaine.

Owner John Kauffman was not home at the time of the blaze and was said to be out-of-state, according to a relative at the scene. No injuries were reported.

Firefighters were concerned, initially, that Mr. Kauffman or others might be inside the structure because the homeowner could not be contacted and a pickup truck was parked in a detached garage.

Firefighters suspect the blaze originated in the area of a wood burning stove, Chief Esch said.

West Liberty firefighters plan to return to the scene today to investigate the suspected chimney burn out and pipes connecting the chimney and wood burner.

Mr. Kauffman reportedly had instructed the family member to run the wood burner to heat the home enough to prevent the pipes from freezing, firefighters report.

The home, built circa 1900 according to Logan County Auditor records, sustained heavy fire, smoke and water damage. The home was worth an estimated $100,000.

Tri-Valley Fire and EMS and Bellefontaine Fire Department provided mutual aid.

Crews were still on the scene at 7 p.m.



West Liberty firefighters douse the side of a County Road 5 house Thursday. (EXAMINER PHOTOS | T.J. HUBBARD)

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