What started this Silvis house fire? It surprised even the fire chief

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A house fire in Silvis leaves a family out in the cold tonight and what started the blaze surprised even the fire chief.

The call came in around 5 p.m. Friday, according to Silvis Fire Chief John Winters. By the time he got to the house on 2nd Avenue, the flames were visible on the front porch and evenutally spread up to the second floor.

Winters said it took about 20 minutes for the Silvis Fire Department and the Carbon Cliff-Barstow Fire Department to extinguish the flames.

One firefighter suffered from smoke inhalation, but was cleared by a medic.

Winters said the cause of the fire was one he hadn’t heard before.

“From talking with the homeowner, he has had a skunk problem and he had bought a commercial grade smoke bomb and put it under the porch and it ignited the porch,” Winters said. “This is one that I’d never heard of … There are professionals out there that do pest control. I guess after seeing this I would recommend using them instead of buying a commercial grade product at the store and trying to do it yourself.”

Winters said the house is not a total loss, but they are setting the homeowners up in a hotel for tonight. He said they’ll be able to start the clean up process in the next couple days.
 

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