FLOYDS KNOBS, IN (WAVE) – The new year did not start off the way a southern Indiana family expected. Their home was destroyed in a fire while they were on vacation Monday.
The fire was reported on Emmons Lane around 7:05 a.m. Monday, according to Lafayette Township Fire Department spokesman Ryan Houchen.
As crews arrived, they could see smoke and flames from the road. When they got closer they found the home was fully engulfed in flames.
"Anytime you get a call if no one is home, we are behind the 8 ball," Houchen said.
Houchen said approximately six to seven fire departments assisted in putting out the flames. He said it took crews an extensive amount of time to stretch lines to the home due to the small driveway not being able to support trucks.
The cold was also a factor in operations, and there was not a full fledged hydrant on scene. Tanker operations were shuttling water from a fill site a few miles away in Starlight, Indiana.
It took firefighters almost an hour to gain control of the fire. The Salvation Army provided a tent for firefighters to warm up and hydrate.
No one was home at the time of the fire and no injuries were reported.
The home belonged to Jacob Tevis' grandparents.
"I've never seen anything like it," Tevis said. "There was 15 foot flames above the house."
Tevis said he was grateful his grandparents were in Florida when the fire broke out. They were on their way back on Monday.
The house smoked for hours. The home is a total loss.
"So many pictures lost that were very old," Tevis said. "We had Christmas here. There is nothing left at all. We'll get through it. We have God with us we'll get through it."
The cause of the fire is under investigation. A Gofundme page has been set up by family members. To help them click here.