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Crews spend hours battling Marshall house fire

MARSHALL, Mich. (NEWSCHANNEL 3) - Firefighters worked in -35 degree wind chills Tuesday to knock down a house fire in Calhoun County.

The fire sparked at about 8:00 a.m. on the 600 block of Birch Street, and it took crews more than four hours to put it all out.

By the time the fire was put out, the inside of the house was effectively turned into a solid piece of ice.

Working in the sub-zero temperatures put a toll on everyone.

To make matters worse, firefighters had a hard time at first opening up the hydrant.

The water company had to be called in to open it up, but ran into more trouble getting the right amount of water to flow.

"We had trouble hooking to a hydrant; we had a frozen hydrant," explained Marshall Deputy Fire Chief Greg McComb.

By the time everything was in place, the fire had spread from the first floor to the attic.

The roof then collapsed in on the second floor.

Thankfully, the family had made it out safe, and firefighters were able to stay warm inside a tent with a heater.

The Deputy Fire Chief is asking everyone to keep something in mind to head off future problems.

"Anyone who has a hydrant in their yard, please dig it out," he said.

At this time, Marshall Fire officials say the house has extensive fire, water, and smoke damage, but a cause for the fire has not yet been determined.