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ROCHESTER, Minn. – Firefighters had to deal with several challenges responding to a house fire Wednesday afternoon.
The call came in around 4:50 pm from the 100 block of 8th Avenue SE. Heavy black smoke was visible from a couple of blocks away by the time firefighters arrived on scene.
Crews worked to extinguish flames on the ground floor but the fire had made it into the 2nd floor attic. The Rochester Fire Department says the stairs to the 2nd floor were damaged by flames and could not be used, so they could only get to the attic by using ladders and entering through windows. But that meant overhead power lines were also a hazard until Rochester Public Utilities arrived to secure them.
Crews eventually put out the fire and searched the home. No one was inside. A tenant called in the fire after returning home. The Fire Department says one tenant needed temporary housing assistance from the Red Cross.
No injuries are reported. The home suffered heavy fire, smoke, and water damage throughout. The cause of the fire is under investigation.
Rochester police, Mayo Clinic Ambulance Service, Rochester Public Utilities, MN Energy, and the Red Cross assisted at the scene.