10-member family escapes North Lake Tahoe house fire unharmed
June 22, 2015
INCLINE VILLAGE, Nev. — Amid wildfire-ripe conditions, North Lake Tahoe fire crews were continuing to monitor a fire Sunday that seriously damaged a single-family home and displaced 10 occupants.
North Lake Tahoe Fire Protection District crews responded at about 6:30 a.m. Sunday to a report of a structure fire at the residence at 101 Pinion Drive, near the Highway 28 intersection just west of the roundabout.
Ten members of a family were inside the home, a second home owned by residents in the San Francisco Bay Area, said NLTFPD Chief Mike Brown.
"The alarm system alerted them to the smoke, and it alerted the fire department, too — everyone exited quickly, and there were smoke and flames upon (our) arrival," Brown said by phone at about noon Sunday.
The family members are friends of the home's owners and were visiting the Lake Tahoe area for Father's Day weekend, Brown said.
They had planned to return to their primary residence in the Bay Monday, he said.
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Fire damage was contained to the home, and no surrounding vegetation is threatened. As of noon Sunday, the fire was not 100 percent extinguished, Brown said, but it is contained.
"It's still burning, there are some hot spots — and it's already started to collapse in some spots," Brown said.
In terms of damage, Brown said, "I would say (the home) is uninhabitable."
Crews will remain on scene Sunday and into Monday to mop up the incident. The cause of the fire is under investigation.
Crews from the Tahoe Douglas Fire Protection District, North Tahoe Fire Protection District and Truckee Meadows Fire Protection District assisted, as did the Washoe County Sheriff's Office and Nevada Highway Patrol.
Wind gusts throughout the Tahoe-Truckee region Sunday morning were approaching 30 mph. The area is under a red flag warning from noon to 10 p.m. Sunday, with gusts as high as 45 mph possible.
A red flag day is one in which a forecast of strong winds plus low humidity equates to high potential of a wildfire spreading beyond control.
"Extreme caution is necessary, including no open flames," according to a statement Sunday from the Truckee Fire Protection District. "Hot engines from weed eaters, mowers and chains saws can start fires. Campfires should be out and cold to the touch. Report any smoke immediately to 911."