Weather Forecast


Two house fires in four hours

Authorities believe a lawnmower sparked the fire that caused extensive damage to the house at 1308 Wallace Street NE in Alexandria. The blaze was reported at 6:30 p.m. Saturday evening and one of the homeowners received minor injuries. Raeshel Betterman | Echo Press1 / 2
A smoldering pile of charcoal was all that remained Monday after a fire destroyed the house at 858 Browns Road, south of Brandon Saturday night. Amy Chaffins | Echo Press2 / 2

Two fires Saturday night reduced one house to rubble and caused significant damage to another.

FIRST FIRE AT 6:31 p.m.

At 6:31 p.m. on Saturday, October 29, law enforcement received a 911 call reporting a fire at 1308 Wallace Street NW in Alexandria.

Peter and Susan Sarberg of Alexandria own the house.

The Alexandria Fire Department contained the fire and the house was severely damaged.

According to the Douglas County Sheriff's Office, it's believed that the fire was possibly ignited by a lawnmower stored in the attached garage.

Authorities reported that one of the homeowners was treated and released at the scene by North Ambulance personnel.

SECOND FIRE AT 10:27 p.m.

Fire engulfed a house at 858 Browns Road SW, south of Brandon Saturday night.

The homeowner, Russell Jorgenson, of Blaine, reported the fire at 10:27 p.m.

Brandon, Evansville and Garfield fire departments were called to the scene where they found the structure fully engulfed in flames.

Jorgenson told law enforcement that a smoke detector woke him up and he discovered his house full of smoke; he was able to escape.

According to the Douglas County Sheriff's Office, Jorgenson said a wall-mounted propane heater likely started the fire.

The structure was a total loss.

No one was seriously injured in the Saturday night fires.

Follow Amy Chaffins on Twitter at @theosakisreview.

Amy Chaffins

Amy Chaffins is a journalist working for the Echo Press newspaper in Alexandria, Minnesota.

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