Fire destroys home near 204th and Q in process of demolition

DOUGLAS COUNTY, Neb. (WOWT) -- Investigators are trying to determine what started a fire early Friday morning that destroyed a house in the process of demolition.

Fire destroys house near 204th and Q streets

It happened 4:30 a.m. near 204th and Q streets.

No one was injured but crews ran into some problems while trying to get the fire out.

A deputy driving by saw the flames and smoke and called it in. When the Omaha Fire Department arrived they ran into a problem.

Battalion Chief Steve Swan said, "This area, as we call it, is water compromised meaning there's just not hydrants close by."

Because there are no fire hydrants in the area Gretna was called in to help bring water to the scene.

Swan said, “If we know it’s an area that doesn't have hydrants, we already have it set up where we bring our equipment so we can shuttle in the water and we also rely on neighboring departments."

In addition to not having working fire hydrants in the area firefighters say this fire was stubborn. They had to bring in foam to help.

“The structure, it collapsed and so there's a lot of void spaces where the fire can, kind of, keep on smoldering. The foam helps it penetrate the wood and the other material in there so it helped put it out."

OFD says they are trained and ready for this exact scenario. They say it's not uncommon in rural areas to not have fire hydrants.

Swan said, “With development, as it's moving around more and more, areas become hydrated but this area is still semi-rural and you do have some new developments so it's not completely odd or out of the question and we train for it. We have the equipment for it."

Crews were able to get the fire out in less than two hours. The cause is being investigated.

The fire put a crimp in morning traffic flow but emergency crews were able to get the northbound lane of 204th street open just before 7 a.m.