Townhomes damaged by night fire

Residents of an entire condominium complex in southeast Minot were evacuated from their homes Friday night after a fire broke out there at about 11:15, causing damage to four of the homes.

Units 17-14, 17-18 and 17-22 were all extensively damaged by the fire, according to Battalion Chief John Hocking of the Minot Fire Department. Units 17-10 and 17-26 were moderately damaged.

The cause and origin of the fire has not yet been determined and the facts that are left are a part of an unfinished report, awaiting further investigation.

Fire and police units were dispatched to the location on 35th Avenue Southeast after being notified of heavy smoke from the area of the 16-townhome complex.

Although the fire was able to be put out and the building was saved there will still be extensive work needed to return the complex to its original condition. Other units not directly affected by the fire did sustain light to moderate smoke and water damage.

The management company, Creative Property Management, of Minot, representatives from Montana-Dakota Utilities and Verendrye Electric Cooperative, and plumbers were all at the scene Saturday morning to go over how to get the undamaged units liveable again.

“There’s a plumbing company and their goal was to drain the water out of those burned-out units and get power to those units that could still be heated and lived in,” Hocking said, “and get started trying to get some heat back in the building again.”

The Red Cross was available after residents were evacuated to provide for and care for those residents who had nowhere else to go. But, since this is holiday season, some residents were not at home at the time of the fire and have been calling to inquire about the state of their home.

Fire units stayed at the scene until about 1:30 p.m. Saturday to watch over the scene so that fire didn’t start back up and spread in the heavy winds in the Minot area Saturday morning.