Freezing conditions challenge firefighters battling house fire in Medina

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MEDINA, Ohio — Cold and windy conditions challenged firefighters as they fought to extinguish flames at a massive Medina County home early Monday.

Firefighters were called to the Stone Road address where they were told there had been an explosion just before 8:30 a.m.

"It came in as an explosion within the residence. When we arrived, the fire was pretty substantial through the house. We had to wait for mutual aid," said Assistant Erhart Fire Chief Guy Roach.

Roach explained the homeowner told them the explosion happened as he lit a propane fireplace at the home.

The homeowner suffered only minor injuries, according to Roach, and was safely out of the house along with one other person who made their way to another building on the 29-acre property.

 

The 11,000-square foot home was heavily damaged by the fire that was fed by high winds. Firefighters said the brutal cold only complicated their efforts to put it out.

"Very cold you know," explained John Hibler, of the Liverpool Township Fire Department

"You have got water flying everywhere and concrete everywhere and it just turns into a big ice skating rink. You have got lines that can freeze up, not to mention with the cold weather and the hot, it makes a lot more condensation type smoke so you can’t see anything at all," Hibler said.

"Luckily, we had a hydrant close that was operational so we could make a quick attack. But the fire was so involved by that point that it was just a matter of trying to stop it from getting to the rest of the house," Roach said.

Firefighters remained at the scene through the early afternoon quenching hot spots.

The home and surrounding property with a 4.5 acre lake, a baseball field, and indoor recreation facility had been listed for sale at $2.5 million.

Local fire investigators were assisted Monday afternoon by experts from the state fire marshal’s office.

"The middle of the house, that’s where the fireplace was, I mean that part of the story seems accurate. But with the wind this morning, it just spread quickly due to the type of the construction and the weather conditions. It just spread through the house and by the time we got here the structure was fully involved," Roach said.