Georgetown Fire Chief Joey Tanner says it may be another day or two before investigators know for sure what sparked a fire that destroyed a home in the city’s Historic District Tuesday night.
The fire was at the home of Bob and Jane Sizemore at 212 Screven Street. The home was built in the early 1900s and is considered an historic structure, said City Councilman Paige Sawyer.
Three firefighters were taken to the hospital for heat exhaustion but they were released and are doing fine, said Tanner.
Tanner said firefighters first responded to a neighboring house because of the smell of smoke. While they were there, they got the call about the fire in the Sizemore home.
When crews arrived, flames were seen shooting from the stairwell and through the rear walls. The flames quickly climbed to the second floor and caused a roof collapse.
While firefighters were inside the house, they used a heat-detecting camera and saw the walls were full of fire. They rushed out of the house just in time to avoid very serious injury, Tanner said.
He said less than a minute after his crews got out of the house, there was a fire flash — a sudden, intense fire caused by ignition of a mixture of air and a dispersed flammable substance.
Initial reports indicate some sort of electrical problem may be to blame for the fire.
“The fire apparently started electrically, probably from a transformer or downed ground line. A transformer was on fire at the beginning per a witness,” Georgetown Mayor Jack Scoville said.
Tanner said because of the extent of the fire, assistance was provided by Georgetown County as well as Midway Fire.
The Salvation Army was also on hand Tuesday night and Wednesday morning to provide food and beverages to the firefighters.
Sawyer said anyone who would like to contribute to a fund to assist the Sizemores can drop off a donation at the Georgetown County Museum located at 632 Prince Street.
By Scott Harper
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