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Electrical issues blamed for two Thanksgiving Day fires; one home destroyed

Thanksgiving Day fires

Firefighters responded to a house fire in the 2400 block of Valley East Lane in Granite Shoals on Thanksgiving night. Courtesy photo

Electrical issues are the suspected cause of two house fires November 28: one in Buchanan Dam and the other in Granite Shoals. No one was injured. Both blazes remain under investigation.

The Buchanan Dam Volunteer Fire Department received a call at 8:55 a.m. Thursday about a house fire in the 100 block of Harold Drive in Buchanan Dam. Twelve hours later, Granite Shoals Fire Rescue responded to a blaze in the 2400 block of Valley East Lane in Granite Shoals.

A double-wide trailer home on Harold Drive was destroyed, according to Lt. Andrew Brenneman of the Buchanan Dam VFD. Two cars at the residence looked to have suffered the same fate.

The Red Cross is helping the family, Brenneman said.

Along with the Buchanan Dam VFD, firefighters from the Cassie Volunteer Fire Department, the Burnet Volunteer Fire Department, the Kingsland Volunteer Fire Department, and the Hoover Valley Volunteer Fire Department also responded. It took about six hours to put out the fire.

Making the work even more dangerous were nearby propane tanks, which were making popping sounds as firefighters battled the blaze, but crews quickly took care of the problem.

“Firefighters cooled the tanks off,” Brenneman said. “That released pressure off them. Firefighters got on the scene quickly to cool the tanks off.”

Two firefighters were treated for heat exhaustion on the scene by Llano County EMS, he said.

“We had a bunch of helmets putting in work,” Brenneman said. “It was a great team effort from all due to the others helping us out. Hopefully, they know we couldn’t have done it without them.”

At about 8:40 p.m. that day, Granite Shoals Fire Rescue, Marble Falls Fire Rescue, and the Marble Falls Volunteer Fire Department responded to a house fire call on Valley East Lane in Granite Shoals.

David Pegues of Granite Shoals Fire Rescue said that, when he and his team arrived, they couldn’t see the fire, but heavy smoke was coming from the two-story home.

Homeowners told Pegues to head upstairs to what they called “the chimney.”

Once upstairs, Pegues still couldn’t find the fire, so he grabbed a pike pole and began poking holes in the ceiling.

“The smoke was thick,” he said. “There was enough oxygen to expose holes in what you see.”

Once oxygen was let in from the holes, Pegues found the fire.

In the attic was a sitting room, a bedroom, and a bathroom.

Pegues noted the fire damage “was not bad as a whole. The house was damaged because of fire and smoke.”

Capt. Sam Stacks of Marble Falls Fire Rescue, who assumed command from Pegues, said the heavy smoke made it more challenging for the firefighters.

Once more personnel were on the scene, firefighters were better able to determine the origin then put out the flames. Crews cleared out by 11:33 p.m.

“In fifteen minutes, we got it knocked down,” Stacks said. “It was all contained to a bedroom and bathroom area in the attic.”