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Fire and ice

Firefighters battle a house fire through temperatures of 15 degrees below zero at Olson’s Mobile Home Park in Alexandria on Monday. (Blaze Fugina/Echo Press)1 / 2
Blaze Fugina | Echo Press Alexandria firefighters tried to stop a mobile home fire from spreading Monday night. (Blaze Fugina/Echo Press)2 / 2

Alexandria firefighters battled a mobile home fire – and wind chills of 35 below zero Monday night.

They were called to the Olson Mobile Home Park, 1611 6th Avenue East, at 9:40 p.m. When they arrived, the trailer home, which was unoccupied and vacant, was fully engulfed in flames, according to Fire Chief Jeff Karrow.

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“Once a trailer house starts on fire, there’s not a lot to save,” Karrow said. “Our main objective was to save the trailer homes behind it and to the side.”

The firefighters succeeded in keeping the flames from damaging any other homes in the park, which is located near the intersection of McKay Avenue and County Road 82 East (formerly known as Highway 27). Gas and electrical lines were disconnected.

The home, owned by Darren Aschman, was a total loss. Karrow estimated the damage at about $10,000.

Twenty-nine of the department’s volunteer force of 30 responded to the blaze, which happened in 15-below temperatures.

“The guys did a good job,” Karrow said. “There were no injuries, no slips or falls.”

The fire was knocked down in about a half hour. Firefighters were on the scene until about midnight, mopping up and taking care of hot spots.

North Ambulance, the Alexandria Police Department and the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office assisted.

Al Edenloff
Al Edenloff is the news and opinion page editor for the Echo Press. He was born in Alexandria and lived most of his childhood in Parkers Prairie. He graduated with honors from Moorhead State University with a degree in mass communications, print journalism. He interned at the Echo Press in the summer of 1983 and was hired a year later as a sports reporter. He also worked as a news reporter/photographer. Al is a four-time winner of the Minnesota Newspaper Association's Herman Roe Award, which honors excellence in editorial writing.  
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