No one was injured in a house fire Monday afternoon in Lake Park, according to Lake Park Fire Chief Dave Coufal.
The fire in the two-story wood frame house on the 2000 block of Second Street was reported at 1:20 p.m.
“When we got there, the house was filled with smoke,” Coufal said. “It was really heavy downstairs in the basement.”
Firefighters at first couldn’t find the source of the smoke, but they checked for hotspots and found the fire in a crawl space under the kitchen.
“We had to cut part of the kitchen floor out to get to it and put it out,” he said. The cause may have been electrical, but hasn’t been determined yet. It is not considered a suspicious fire and the state fire marshal’s office will not be called to investigate, he said.
At first, firefighters were concerned that children were at home during the fire, but found that they were at a neighbor’s house while their parents were gone.
The house sustained moderate damage, mostly from smoke damage, but also damage to the kitchen floor. But it could have gotten a lot worse, quickly, if the fire had not been reported when it was, Coufal said.
The firefighting effort, “went really good,” he said. “But If somebody hadn’t seen that (smoke), it would have been a different story.”
It will take some time before the house is habitable again, however. The hole in the kitchen floor has to be fixed, and power to the house was cut off by an electrician, who set up an emergency power link that only goes to the furnace to keep the house from freezing. The residence will have to be inspected and approved before the family can move back in, he said.
The Audubon Fire Department was initially asked to help with the fire, but the mutual aid request was canceled after Lake Park firefighters arrived at the scene. “Our guys handled it,” Coufal said.