Strong Winds Fan House Fire Flames

Tuesday, January 29th 2008, 2:03 pm
By: News On 6

A wind-swept fire destroyed a Rogers County home.  The fire started at around 11:30 Wednesday morning just west of Inola along Highway 412.  The News On 6's Dan Bewley reports firefighters in Inola say the house would have escaped the fire if not for the meddling wind.

Swallowed by flames, a Rogers County home barely stood a chance. Neighbor Danny Dobson witnessed the beginning.

"The detached garage was engulfed in flames when I seen it," said Dobson.

Concerned for his neighbors, Dobson was relieved to see the couple eventually standing across the street out of harm's way.  Then his thoughts went to their home.  Watching helplessly from his front porch, Dobson has no doubt why the flames grew so big and so fast.

"It's just the wind, the wind. The garage is on the other side of the house, the wind just blew the flames right into the house and caught it all on fire," said Dobson.

Because of the high wind, firefighters knew their only course of action was to try to contain the blaze, to keep the fire from spreading to the neighboring homes.

"We wanted to stop that spread before it got more structures and more grass on fire," said Inola Fire Chief Barney Grigg.

The wind caused more than the fire to dance.  It also blew the smoke for miles. Chief Grigg says his department received several calls from residents who couldn't tell from where the fire was coming.

Their plan worked, the chief says, they kept the neighborhood and nearby yards free from the flames. He only wishes the same could be said of the house.

"If the wind would have been out of the south the house would have probably been saved. But when the wind switched out of the north it forced it all over into the house," said Chief Grigg.

The cause of the fire is still under investigation.