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Cold, clutter obstacles as two houses catch fire

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Posted at 1:37 PM, Feb 13, 2016
and last updated 2016-02-13 14:23:44-05

INDIANAPOLIS -- Firefighters had several obstacles to battle besides flames when two homes caught fire Saturday morning on English Avenue.

Crews got the call shortly before 3 a.m. that houses at 1524 and 1528 English Avenue were on fire.

Red and Lilly Sutton, who've lived at 1528 English Avenue for 30 years, say they were sleeping when their dog started barking and alerted them to the fire.

They also noticed the front porch of the home next door was on fire, so they went to alert the man who lives there.

The Sutton's say Homer Mills was asleep outside in his truck and no idea his house was on fire.

Mills told firefighters he isn't sure what started the fire but that he had exposed wires running to the front porch where there was a working refrigerator.

He said he was sleeping in his truck because there was no heat in his house.

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Firefighters had to overcome several obstacles as they tried to extinguish the fires.

They say it was nearly impossible for them to get inside 1524 English because of excessive clutter throughout the house.

A gas line was feeding the fire and there was a large amount of ammunition in the attic.

Firefighters also had to stop and get a chainsaw to remove a large overgrown bush blocking access to the house.

The bitter cold temperatures also made it difficult to fight the fire. Gear, equipment and walkways were frozen because of the amount of water being used.

 

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Posted by Indianapolis Fire Department on Saturday, February 13, 2016

 

IMPD had to be called to help with traffic after someone drove over a supply line and damaged the hose. 

A second motorist tried to drive over the hose but was stopped before any damage could be done.

Mills' home is a total loss and he had no insurance.

Damage to the Sutton's home is estimated at $30,000.

Firefighters say there were no working smoke detectors in either home.

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