Basement fire holds back Grand Haven crews

8:01 AM, Jan 2, 2014   |    comments
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Scene of house fire, Alexander St. in Grand Haven.

GRAND HAVEN, Mich. (WZZM) -- Firefighters say an intense fire damaged a Grand Haven home, forcing them the battle the fames from outside of the house.

They were called to a home on Arlington Avenue around 6:45 p.m. Wednesday after a report of smoke inside the house.  A short time later, flames were visible in the basement.

Crews tried to enter the basement, but the fast spreading of the fire and intense heat forced them out of the home.  One firefighter had to get out through the front window of the home.

Crews used foam to put out the basement fire after a second unsuccessful attempt to get inside.

The fire was out around 9:20 p.m.  It re-flared around 1 a.m. Thursday, requiring firefighters to return to the home. 

Crews say their efforts were hampered because of the nature of the fire -- and the damage it had already done.

"It's impossible to find all the hidden fire in the house, in the attic and in the basement," says Jeff Hawke, director of the Grand Haven Department of Public Safety.  "The issue is that the floor is burned out in the house and we can't make entry into the house. The floor's unsafe. It extended up into the eaves, so a portion of the roof is unsafe. We're not going to put firefighters up there."

Firefighters say the fire destroyed the home.

Firefighters from Ferrysburg, Spring Lake Township and Grand Haven Township also responded to the fire, with help from the Norton Shores Fire Department's canteen crew.

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