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Lightning suspected cause of fires in Rosemount, Farmington

Farmington firefighters had to haul in water to fight Friday morning fire on Biscayne Path. Lightning is a possible cause of the fire.1 / 2
Fire chief Richard Schroeder said this house on Derryglenn Ct. is likely a total loss. Lightning struck the house sometime before 4:20 a.m. June 21.2 / 2

A lightning strike caused an early morning fire that destroyed a home in Rosemount June 21, and another might have started a fire a few miles south in Empire Township.

The first fire was reported to Rosemount firefightersl around 4:20 a.m. Friday. According to fire chief Richard Schroeder, there was a lightning strike in the attic of the home on Derryglenn Ct. That strike started a fire that spread through the walls. Fire alarms and light smoke in the house woke the family and everyone got out without injury.

The building itself wasn't so fortunate. Much of the home's roof was gone by the time the fire was extinguished.

"She is probably going to be a total loss," Schroeder said.

Firefighters were on the scene for more than six hours. Schroeder said it was difficult to fight the fire because of the size of the house and because of close quarters between the building and neighboring houses. There was little room to get an aerial in to fight the fire from above, and there was no way to get a truck in behind the house.

The home had been boarded up by 4:30 p.m. Friday. The family was in the process of building a two-story addition on the back of the house.

The second fire did damage to a home on Biscayne Avenue. Farmington fire captain Adam Fischer said a neighbor reported smoke just before 7 a.m. There were visible flames when a Dakota County Sheriff's deputy responded to the call and Farmington firefighters confirmed the fire when they arrived.

Fischer said the fire was challenging to fight.

"It took a while to get it out because there were a couple of layers to the ceiling that were make it difficult to get access," Fischer said.

Firefighters had to haul in water because there are no hydrants along the rural gravel road.

Fischer said there was a lightning strike in the area Friday morning. It was not immediately clear whether that was the cause of the fire.

The house was currently for sale and nobody was living there.

Lakeville firefighters also responded to the fire.

Nathan Hansen

Nathan Hansen has been a reporter and editor with the Farmington Independent and the Rosemount Town Pages since 1997. He is very tall.

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