Wapello family loses everything in house fire that started in utility room

WAPELLO, Iowa — A family has lost their home after a devastating fire started in the basement utility room.

According to Wapello Fire Rescue’s Facebook page, the fire broke out at a home on Mill Street around 3:10 p.m. Monday, December 3.  There was nobody home at the time.

Crews started fighting the fire but “quickly discovered that conditions inside were too dangerous for an interior attack,” read the Facebook post.  They wound up making a defensive attack on the fire, and were forced to use a fire hydrant that was 750 feet away because the nearest one was frozen.

Forty firefighters ended up responding to the fire.  Crews remained on scene until 9:30 p.m.

The people who lived there did not have homeowners insurance, according to the post.  The Red Cross was called to assist them.