Firefighters’ quick response saves apartment house.

April 15, 2016

state st fire -1By Allison Scarbrough. Editor.

HART — The quick actions of firefighters and emergency personnel Friday morning, April 15, saved a two-story apartment house at 515 S. State St. from an electrical fire.

The fire caused minimal damage confined to a wall, said Hart Fire Chief Ken Klotz.

state st fire 2Five residents in the upstairs apartment and two residents of the downstairs apartment will have to stay elsewhere tonight due to no electricity in the building at this time, Klotz said. The Red Cross was dispatched to the scene to help the residents find alternative lodging until power is restored, Klotz said.

The apartment house is owned by Doug Walls of the Manistee area, said apartment caretaker Russell Pierce, who was at the scene. Pierce said the building is insured. The fire started in the downstairs bathroom, Pierce said.

Derek Luedtke, who lives in the downstairs unit, said he smelled smoke and then saw smoke coming from the ceiling. He immediately called 911 at approximately 10:45 a.m., and firefighters quickly arrived on scene. “I saw smoke billowing out of the corner of the roof,” Luedtke said.

Pierce said there was an electrical fire in the building two years ago. “It’s state st fire 3an older house with older wiring,” he said.

“We got it out right away,” said Klotz of Friday morning’s blaze.

Assisting Hart Area Fire Department were Shelby Benona Fire Department, Oceana County EMS, the Oceana County Sheriff’s Office and the Hart Police Department.

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