Fire destroys rural home; no injuries

Man had to drive to get help because of no cellphone service

A Wimer man who found his home on fire Monday morning had to drive four miles to alert the fire department because he couldn't get cellphone reception, officials said.

The fire, reported at 8:15 a.m., destroyed the home at 2441 Sykes Creek Road, said Evans Valley Fire District No. 6 Chief Bill Fuller.

Fire had consumed the house by the time firefighters arrived, Fuller said. It took about 16 minutes to knock down the blaze and another couple of hours to fully extinguish it, he said. Two engines and a water tender from Evans Valley and Rogue River Fire District No. 1 and an Oregon Department of Forestry vehicle responded, he said.

"Everything was on our side today," Fuller said. "Had it been hot like last week, we would have had a forest fire."

Fuller said the man had been away from the house and found the fire when he returned. His wife was at work, Fuller said. The rural area does not provide cell reception, so the man drove to the Evans Valley department to report the fire.

No one was injured in the fire, and the couple's dog and two cats were safe, Fuller said. The estimated damage of the single-story home ranged from $60,000 to $70,000, Fuller said.

The cause remains under investigation, although the fire is not considered suspicious, he said.

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