Crews respond to house fire, explosion in Grand Lake

The Grand Lake Fire Department, Grand Fire and the Grand County Sheriff’s Department are responding to a house fire in Grand Lake which started this morning and involved an explosion, say neighbors.
Jules Zane/Courtesy Photo

Grand Lake Fire Department crews responded to a house fire on County Road 4454 in Grand Lake on Tuesday, which, according to a neighbor, started at approximately 7:20 a.m.

Jules Zane, who lives behind the house, said his wife was making breakfast when she saw flames coming out some of the house’s windows. A few moments later, they heard an explosion that appeared to come from inside the house. Zane said the house burned “extremely fast” and by the time Grand Lake FD arrived, it was a three-story fire.

Crews from Grand Lake Fire, Grand Fire and the Grand County Sheriff’s Department fought the fire in winds that snapped trees and created a power outage from Winter Park to Grand Lake, according to Mountain Parks Electric.

Grand Lake Fire Protection District Fire Marshall Dan Mayer said the blaze originated near a newly installed pellet stove inside the house and that the explosion appeared to come from a tank on a grill. Mayer said the homeowner was working in his office in the basement and was unaware of the fire until he heard a “commotion.” By the time he and some of his neighbors noticed, the deck an the front end of the house were on fire.

Mayer said he responded to the fire in one of the department’s tanker trucks and had to refill the 3,500-gallon tank three times. The department’s two additional tanker trucks were re-filled three times. All told, extinguishing the fire took between 28 and 30,000 gallons of water.

In a call with the Sky-Hi News during the fire, Mayer said that the owner was “very lucky” that he heard the commotion. Three dogs lived in the house, and at the time of the call, two had been located. Mayer said the house fire was “trying to become a wildfire,” in the high winds and surrounded by trees, as it was.

Mayer called the paper at around 1 p.m. and said the fire had been put out. He later added that the third dog had been found dead. “The owner was a very, very nice guy and he was lucky that he got out of that house,” Mayer added.

This story was updated from its original version to include more information.

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