Friday, November 3, 2006

Fire results in animal casualties

Human occupants, firefighters escape injury in Tuesday blaze

Express Staff Writer

Fire crews work Tuesday to douse a fire that destroyed two mobile homes south of Ketchum. Several animals died in the fire. Photo by Chris Pilaro

At least four animals perished and several people are looking for permanent shelter following a Tuesday afternoon blaze that destroyed two mobile homes in Ketchum.

An electrical short outside one of the homes sparked the fire, said Kim Rogers, city of Ketchum spokeswoman. Flames were apparently spread by an exposed propane bottle and high winds.

A third mobile home was damaged in the incident.

Fire personnel and equipment from the Ketchum, Sun Valley and Wood River Fire & Rescue fire departments were dispatched at 2:30 p.m. Oct. 31 to homes behind Mountain View Grocery on state Highway 75, in southern Ketchum.

"Assistant Chief Robbie Englehart arrived on scene at 2:35 to find two fully involved trailers on fire," Rogers said.

The two occupants of one mobile unit, belonging to Orland Badley, were at home when the fire broke out, Rogers said.

"They rescued four dogs out of seven," Rogers said. A female dog and her two puppies died in the fire.

In the other mobile home, belonging to Carl Hedden, a cat died while one dog escaped. Another dog is unaccounted for.

Seven engines, three ambulances, 25 Ketchum Fire Department personnel, 11 from Sun Valley and two Wood River Fire & Rescue paramedics responded.

No one was injured in the fire, which was contained at 3:06 p.m.

The Ketchum-Sun Valley Volunteer Firefighters Association's Burnout Fund is being tapped to help the victims with housing, food and clothing.

The Gold Mine, Atkinsons' Market and the Clarion Inn are providing necessities for the people who lost their homes.

The damaged mobile home is still habitable, Rogers said.

The Burnout Fund gets its funds in part from the Firemen's Ball, which will be held this year on Nov. 18.

"The Red Cross will take over in the next few days," Rogers said, "because these people are really going to need help."

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