UPDATE: Fire destroys home in rural Waterloo - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

UPDATE: Fire destroys home in rural Waterloo

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UPDATE: Fire crews say a fire which destroyed a home in rural Waterloo Tuesday afternoon, may have been caused by a wood-burning stove inside the home.

A number of volunteer fire departments, including La Porte City and Gilbertville, responded to the 5200 block of Weiden Rd. to help contain the fire. 

Flames were gushing out of the rural Waterloo home when fire crews arrive. 

Owner Randall Hinders said he stepped out to help a friend who was apartment hunting. 

"Yeah, I didn't know it until I got on this road and I saw it coming across the road," said Hinders. 

Hinders' neighbor was the one who spotted the fire and called it in.

"We were backing out, and I saw smoke," said his neighbor. "And then we backed out of the driveway and then we see the flames too-just woosh."

Neighbors made the 911 call. 

"I thought it was a wood burner or something," said his neighbor.  "And all of a sudden, flames were shooting out just like that."

Thick smoke and a lack of fire hydrants in the area forced firefighters to haul in extra water to put out this relentless smoke. But, gallon after gallon of water-there was not nearly enough to contain the fumes spewing out of the house. 

Gilbertville Fire Chief Johnson said the home had multiple additions, which made it tough for firefighters to pinpoint where in the attic the fire was spreading. 

Firefighters were eventually forced to cut through the upper level of the building to relieve the smoke gaining momentum. The thick smoke blanketed this entire neighborhood which could be seen down the road. 

"I'm not sure what happened," said Hinders. "I left. I was gone maybe an hour. Came back and see smoke coming out of my house."

The owner has a lot of questions about what started the fire, but the one thing on his mind was his dog that he left in the house. 

"My dog was inside, so I still don't know what happened to him," said Hinders. 

Fire crews say his 10-year-old black lab, Shadow, did not make it. 

Hinders says the home used to be his father's house before he died. He was never able to get insurance for the home because of a wood-burning stove inside.

At last check, investigators believe the wood-burning stove might've caused the fire, but they're still looking into the exact cause. 


A number of fire departments are working to put out a house fire in the 5200 block of Weiden Rd in Waterloo Tuesday afternoon. 

Neighbors made a call to firefighters after they saw heavy smoke coming from the roof of the house. It's possible the fire started from a wood burner, however, fire crews are not sure of the exact cause at this time. 

Fire crews say no one was home at the time of the fire, but a dog may be inside. 

This is a breaking news story, stay with KWWL as this story develops. 

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