By Kim Walter
A fire that destroyed a Linden vacation home Sunday morning is under investigation, according to a release sent out Monday afternoon by Warren County Fire Chief Richard Mabie.
The fire, which took place at 2008 High Top Road in Blue Mountain, was called in by a neighbor just before 7:30 a.m. on Sunday. Units arrived on the scene at 7:40 a.m. to "find a two-story wood frame vacation home fully involved extending into the woods with electrical lines down," the release states.
Mabie said the fire had probably been going for some time, because when the neighbor called to report it, he said the fire was burning through the roof. Mabie estimates the house to be about 1,600 square feet.
The home, owned by Sharon Chapman of Smithfield and family, was completely destroyed. Mabie said the property had belonged to a family member who later passed away, and it was left to the family to use intermittently. The house was not occupied at the time of the fire, and no firefighters were injured.
"The only thing left standing is the foundation and the chimney," Mabie said.
While the several units that responded had the fire under control by 8 a.m., the scene wasn't cleared until almost 10:30 a.m. due to notifying the owners and waiting for them to arrive, Mabie said.
Naturally, they were very upset," he said. "From what I understand the house had been in the family a long time ... it's one thing to receive the call that your house is on fire, but to actually pull up to the structure and see it is another thing."
Damages resulting from the fire are estimated at $125,000, the release states.
The neighbor who called in the fire was hosing down parts of his own property, including a fence and vehicle, when units arrived.
"Thankfully it wasn't spreading much, so we were quick in knocking out the main body of the fire," Mabie said.
While staff has a few theories as to how the fire started, nothing official has been released at this point.
Contact staff writer Kim Walter at 540-465-5137 ext. 191, or firstname.lastname@example.org