Authorities said sparks from a wood burning stove are most likely the cause of a fire that destroyed a garage and apartments at a Highway V home Friday.
Franklin County Arson Investigator Jim Schuhmacher said the stove, used to heat water, was located in the rear of the structure. The garage and apartments were attached to a home in the Villa Ridge area. The fire occurred south of St. John’s Road.
There was dried vegetation around the stove which caught fire and caused the two-alarm blaze that began about 2 p.m.
“The spark out of the wood appliance spread along the northeast side of the residence,” he said. “That confirms what the Union Fire Protection District firefighters told me they saw when they got to the scene.”
Schuhmacher added that the fire spread to vehicles parked outside the residence.
Attached to the home was a two-car garage, and above that were two “suites” and an apartment in the rear of the garage.
There were three tenants living on the property, including one who was home when the fire began. There were no injuries during the blaze.
A pickup truck, Chevy Tahoe and Chevy Camaro were destroyed in the fire.
The apartment and suites also were destroyed but fire crews were able to save the home on the property.
Schuhmacher said eight fire districts and departments responded to the scene, including Union, Boles, St. Clair, Washington, Beaufort-Leslie, New Haven, Pacific and Gerald-Rosebud.