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Family of 5 escapes Hastings house fire

Brenda Green (far left) is comforted Sept. 17, 2018, by a neighbor after an early morning fire destroyed her home on St. Croix Trail Lane in Hastings. William Loeffler / RiverTown Multimedia1 / 4
A boy surveys his home after a Sept. 17 fire in Hastings. William Loeffler / RiverTown Multimedia2 / 4
An early morning fire destroyed a home at 7774 St. Croix Trail Lane in Hastings. The family escaped without injury in the Sept. 17 blaze, which is believed to have started in the garage. William Loeffler / RiverTown Multimedia3 / 4
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HASTINGS — A family of five escaped a fire that destroyed their home early Monday morning, Sept. 17 in Hastings.

There were no reported injuries to civilians or firefighters.

Shortly after 4 a.m., the Hastings Fire Department responded to a report of a structure fire at 7774 South St. Croix Trail Lane S. The blaze, which started in the garage, is under investigation, Hastings Fire Chief Mike Schutt said.

"When we arrived the garage was fully involved and the fire had spread to the kitchen and attic," Schutt said. "It's a total loss."

It took over an hour to contain the fire, Hastings Fire Captain Ryan McGraw said. The fire had spread up under the roofline, collapsing a portion of it onto the lower structure. The phenomenon, known as pancaking, can make the flames harder to reach, Schutt said.

Three vehicles and a motorcycle were destroyed in the blaze.

The Hastings Fire Department was assisted by fire companies from Lower St. Croix Valley, Cottage Grove, St. Paul Park, Prescott and Woodbury. Most of the companies provided extra pumper trucks, Schutt said. There are no fire hydrants in the rural neighborhood.

The Washington County Sheriff's Office also provided aid.

Later Monday morning, Brenda and Patrick Green and their three children surveyed the damage to their home. Neighbors offered comfort.

"It's super-unfortunate but everyone got out and that's what matters," Brenda Green said.

Friends have set up a Go Fund Me page for the family. To donate, visit

William Loeffler

William Loeffler is a playwright and journalist from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He worked 15 years writing features for the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. He has also written travel stories based on his trips to all seven continents. He and his wife, Michelle, ran the Boston Marathon in 2009. 

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