BEATRICE – Beatrice Firefighters were sent to an early Friday morning fire at a vacant house, in the east part of the city. The blaze is now being described as “very suspicious”, by the Chief of Beatrice Fire and Rescue.
Department personnel went to 1532 Ella Street, just northwest of the Beatrice Public Library, a few minutes before three a.m. Fire Chief Brian Daake said firefighters fought the blaze from the exterior.
:18 “completely out”
No one was residing in the home, which is a one-story structure with a small attic.
:06 “happened there”
A Nebraska State Fire Marshal investigator was summoned to the scene this morning. Anyone with information that may assist in the investigation is being asked to call the Nebraska Arson Hotline….1-888-992-7766. The house is located along the north side of Ella Street, just west of 16th and Ella.
:08 “through the roof”
Daake says there was significant fire damage to the kitchen and a back porch, and the fire burned through the roof of the structure. There was heat and smoke damage throughout the house. The damage to the building is estimated at $30,000. There was a roughly $1,000 loss of contents, mainly tools.
Two fire trucks and an ambulance were sent to the scene at 2:52 a.m. A hydrant is located nearby at the intersection.
Police officers first arriving on the scene reported the home was engulfed in flames, but not occupied. The intersection of 16th and Ella was blocked off while firefighters were at the scene. A Black Hills Energy crew member was summoned to deal any gas service shut-off needed. Firefighters wrapped up work at the scene, at 7:47 this morning.