Rural Backus man's smoke alarm warns him of home fire
Fire destroys his home
A man learned Wednesday, April 14, of the importance of smoke alarms in his rural home southwest of Backus.
"Well, he was awakened by a smoke detector for a small fire in his house," said Backus Fire Chief Jason Smith. "He attempted to put it out himself with a fire extinguisher, but couldn't."
The man walked to a neighbor's house to call for help at approximately 8:45 p.m. The Backus Fire Department arrived approximately six minutes later, but the small structure had already mostly burned down to the basement.
"Well, he was awakened by a smoke detector for a small fire in his house. He attempted to put it out himself with a fire extinguisher, but couldn't. "
— Backus Fire Chief Jason Smith.
The Pine River Fire Department provided water and manpower while Backus firefighters extinguished the fire.
"It was a single standing structure with not much around, no garages or anything like that," Smith said.
The biggest challenge with the fire was the driveway, which Smith said was very narrow with no place to turn around. The crews wrapped up around 11 p.m.
The fire's cause was unknown; however, the age and condition of the home may have contributed to the speed that it burned.
Smith said this was a testament to the importance of having working smoke alarms. However, it may also serve as a reminder of the proper use of fire extinguishers.
A fire extinguisher should only be considered if the fire is small enough to put out with one extinguisher. But before attempting to put out a fire, a homeowner is encouraged to call 911 so that if the fire extinguisher is not sufficient, crews will already be on their way and the chances of salvaging a building or preventing injury will be higher. Response time is vital.
Travis Grimler may be reached at 218-855-5853 or email@example.com. Follow him on Facebook and on Twitter at www.twitter.com/@PEJ_Travis.