An early morning house fire in Walnut Cove displaced four people and took hours to get under control on Monday.
On Monday at 6:32 a.m., units from Walnut Cove, Salem Chapel, South Stokes, Belews Creek, Stokes County EMS, Walnut Cove Police Department and Stokes County Sheriff’s Department responded to a reported house fire at 507 Highway 65 East, Walnut Cove, across from Hedgecock Builders Supply.
According to Randy Williams, who is investigating the fire for the offices of the Stokes County and Walnut Cove fire marshals, a passerby saw the fire and knocked on the residence door to wake the family up. Someone at Hedgecock called emergency communications to report the fire.
When fire crews arrived, they found a fire in progress on the second floor of the two-story home. Initial reports were of a subject trapped on the second floor and rescue efforts were initiated, but the subject was then located outside the structure, according to a report from Walnut Cove Fire and Rescue.
Additional units from Stokes-Rockingham responded to assist. Thirty personnel were on scene to help in the effort. The fire was brought under control at 9:06 a.m., but the home sustained major fire damage to the second floor with water and smoke damage on the first. All units cleared the scene at 11:15 a.m.
Four residents were displaced due to the fire, but no injuries were reported. The Red Cross is assisting the occupants with any needs.
The Stokes County Fire Marshal’s office is handling the investigation, and the cause had not yet been determined as of Tuesday morning. Williams said at this point the fire is not being treated as suspicious, though he cannot rule anything out until further investigation is completed. He said the damage of the house was such that he was waiting on a building inspector to come and see if the house was safe to enter to investigate the cause of the fire.
The top part of the old house was completely destroyed, with heat, smoke and water damage downstairs. The house is basically a total loss, Williams estimates, because it would likely cost more to fix the house than it would be worth.