By Ryan Cornell
STEPHENS CITY -- Flames gutted the walls and a dense smoke filled the otherwise cloudless sky above a Stephens City home at 441 Marlboro Road on Tuesday afternoon.
By the time the Stephens City Volunteer Fire and Rescue Company arrived at around 1 p.m., the inside of the house had been completely charred. Greg Locke, chief of the fire and rescue company, called the damage "considerable."
"Between the heat, the fire, the smoke and the water, it's gonna be a lot of damage," he said. "I mean, the exterior, the shell is in good shape. But the interior has a lot of damage. They've lost pretty much all of their contents."
He said there was concern because vehicles were parked in the driveway of the house, but the squad concluded that there was nobody inside the house after conducting a primary and secondary search. He said the fire had occurred while the resident of the home had left to get some food.
"Could the home be rebuilt?" Locke asked. "Possibly. But the interior contents are pretty much destroyed."
Units that responded to the blaze included Stephens City, Middletown and Millwood Station volunteer fire and rescue companies in Frederick County, firefighters from Shawnee station in Winchester and a crew from Strasburg.
The case is being investigated by the Frederick County Fire Marshal's Office.
Information on the occupants was not available Tuesday evening.
Contact staff writer Ryan Cornell at 540-465-5137 ext. 164, or firstname.lastname@example.org