Serene Lakes house burns, second home scorched |

Serene Lakes house burns, second home scorched

Firefighters were still mopping up a fire at 5 p.m. on Tuesday that destroyed a three-story home in Serene Lakes earlier in the day.

“It was a total loss,” said Fire Marshall Rob Huseby with the Donner Summit Fire Department.

Luckily, the house, which is owned by second homeowners, was vacant at the time of the blaze and no injuries were reported.

“At 7:30 a.m., we first received a call that there was smoke in the Hillside Drive area,” Huseby said. “A paid staff member from the department just happened to live on Hillside Drive and saw the smoke when he was getting ready to leave for work, so he went down to check things out.”

When the employee arrived on the scene, he called the station to report that the “residential structure was fully involved in fire.”

“Since Hillside Drive is not a well-traveled road, the fire had probably been going for at least an hour before anyone even noticed,” Huseby said.

By the time crews arrived, the fire had started to spread to a neighbor’s home.

“We initially attacked that exposure fire and extinguished it,” Huseby said.

The neighbor’s home, which is also owned by second homeowners, sustained some charring and had several windows blown out on one side. The residence was also unoccupied at the time of the fire.

In addition to their three engines on the scene, Donner Summit firefighters also received assistance from Truckee and Squaw Valley crews.

The cause of the fire was still under investigation on Wednesday.

California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection investigators are assisting with the case.

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