Pets escape burning garage on Tower Road; no one injured

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No one was injured in a garage fire Saturday evening, Jan. 25, on the 29000 block of Tower Road.

The garage was “pretty much fully engaged,” by the time firefighters got the call, said Detroit Lakes Fire Chief Ryan Swanson. “I live about 3 miles from that area, and when I turned onto County Road 54 (the Hidden Hills Road) I could already see the flames -- it obviously had a pretty good head start on us,” he said.

Nobody was home at the time, and nobody was injured. The fire was called in by a passerby. There were pets in the garage, but all were able to get out on their own through a doggy door, Swanson said.

The detached wooden garage was roughly 24-feet wide by 24-feet long, and is about 25 feet away from the house, which was not damaged, Swanson said.

Detroit Lakes firefighters received mutual aid from Frazee and Audubon.


Audubon firefighters brought in a tanker truck to give a Detroit Lakes crew time to dig out the nearest fire hydrant at Randolph Road and County Road 54. “It took about 15 minutes for them to dig it out,” Swanson said, because there was a lot of hard-packed snow blocking the hydrant. Once it was clear, firefighters used the hydrant to fill up tanker trucks to ferry water to crews at the scene. About 10,000 gallons was used to put out the fire, Swanson said.

Firefighters were on the scene for more than two hours.

As a community project, Swanson urged neighbors to get together and clear fire hydrants of snow.

“When we’re in an emergency situation, that 15 minutes is a lot of time,” he said.

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