INFERNO ... Flames and smoke pour from the Jerry and Wanda Selking home on Eagle Ridge Court. (Photo by Kristin Baron)
A house fire that created smoke visible for several miles destroyed a relatively new home near Cross Creek Golf Course on Decatur's northwest side late Thursday morning.
The home at 1209 Eagle Ridge Ct. is owned by Jerry and Wanda Selking and was deemed a total loss, although a spokesman for the Decatur Fire Department said today that some items from the house were saved by firefighters.
In addition, two garages on the property were damaged, but can be repaired, and two vehicles inside the garages were not damaged.
No one was in the structure at the time. The Selkings reportedly are in Australia, visiting a daughter.
The fire department spokesman said several city firefighters were hit by a falling drywall ceiling after they entered the home, but were not harmed.
The fire, which is still under investigation by the department and the state fire marshall's office, brought firefighters to the scene at 10:29 a.m. and they were there until 3:57 p.m., assisted by the Preble Fire Department.
At the height of the fire, some 20 to 25 firefighters were in action as it took about an hour to quell the flames.
Members of the Monroe Fire Department came to the Decatur fire station to stand by in a backup capacity.
Decatur firefighters also made a run at midnight after a smoke alarm went off in one of the Waterbury Apartments buildings at 1216 S. 14th St. No fire was found.