Wednesday blaze during winter storm destroys Lycurgus area home ...

The Waukon Fire Department was called to a house fire at 2315 Lycurgus Road in rural Lansing Wednesday afternoon, February 22, around 1:45 p.m., battling not only the roaring blaze pictured above but also the ice, wind and snow (evident in the photo as well) of the winter storm that gripped the area that day, creating very slippery road conditions.

Homeowner Michelle Welsh was home at the time of the blaze and was able to get herself and her pets safely out of the burning structure.

Waukon Fire Chief Dave Martin said the origin of the blaze was the home’s woodburning stove in the basement, although he said the exact cause of what started the fire in that area will likely not be able to be determined due to the extent of the damage to the structure. Chief Martin said the high winds that accompanied Wednesday’s winter storm and the framed construction of the residence allowed the fire to spread very quickly from the basement up the walls of the structure and into the attic, engulfing the home very quickly, before fire crews arrived on scene.

Along with three tanker trucks from Waukon, both the New Albin and Lansing Fire Departments also assisted with personnel and three tanker trucks each to help haul water to the fire from a fill hydrant in Waukon. The icy road conditions prevented the crews from hauling water from a dry hydrant available near the Upper Iowa River because of the steep, winding hill involved in making that trek back and forth.

“The roads were very bad, but the County road crews really helped - anyone close by was diverted to us and allowed us to run those nine trucks with the longer drive to get water,” Chief Martin said. The Allamakee County Sheriff’s Department also assisted with closing down Lycurgus Road north and south of the fire location. Fire crews were at the scene of the fire for nearly four hours. Submitted photo.