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Fire destroys trailer

Posted: Sunday, May 15, 2005

A fire in Soldotna on Friday afternoon destroyed a mobile home, but the three people inside escaped without injuries.

According to Central Emergency Services Fire Marshall Gary Hale, the trailer fire at 44720 Knight Drive in Soldotna was reported by Mike McConahy, an off-duty CES firefighter, at 2:48 p.m. Wednesday.

Hale said CES was on the scene within four minutes of getting the call. When they arrived with two engines, a ladder truck, three command vehicles and an ambulance they found heavy smoke billowing from the trailer. A total of 19 personnel responded to the fire.

"It was a lot of black smoke with little flames showing," Hale said.

Fire crews were able to bring the blaze under control within 13 minutes.

Hale estimated the fire caused between $25,000 and $30,000 in damage to the home, which belongs to Michael and Diane Moore. Hale said it's believed the fire was started when one of the Moore's grandchildren accidentally ignited a bed while playing with a butane lighter. The child alerted his napping grandfather, who tried to put out the fire by stomping on it and pouring water from the bathroom on the flames. His efforts were unsuccessful.

"He tried to stomp it out, but it didn't work," Hale said. "At that point he yells for everyone to get out."

Hale said only Michael and Diane Moore and the 5-year-old boy were home at the time. The Moores also care for two other grandchildren.

Much of the trailer and the Moores' possessions were damaged in the fire.

"The majority of the trailer and its contents received major fire damage," Hale said.

Hale said it was lucky none of the family were injured in the blaze.

"That's kind of a blessing in disguise," he said. "They were very fortunate. It was going very fast."

Kelly Hurd with the American Red Cross in Anchorage said the organization is helping the family get back on its feet.

"We are helping temporarily with food, clothing and shelter," Hurd said.

Local Red Cross programs manager Annette Hakkinen said the agency will provide housing for the Moore family through the weekend. She said the family recently purchased another mobile home that they'll be able to move into shortly.

"That's the good news," Hakkinen said.

However, they don't have any furniture for the new home, and most of their belongings were destroyed in the fire.

"It's completely empty," Hakkinen said.

Anyone wishing to make a donation to help the Moore family can contact the Red Cross at 283-4556 or online at www.redcross.org.



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