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W.Va. home destroyed by fire

December 14, 2010

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. — A family of four was left homeless Tuesday night after fire destroyed its single-story residence east of Martinsburg off Files Cross Road, Bedington Volunteer Fire Department Chief Tom Newcomb said.


No one was injured in the blaze, which was reported at 7:19 p.m. in the 200 block of Shetland Hill Drive, according to a Berkeley County Central Dispatch supervisor and Newcomb.


A passer-by initially reported that a wooded area was on fire, and Newcomb said the blaze apparently went unnoticed for a while before that.


When firefighters arrived, the roof of the home had caved in and only the outside walls were standing, Newcomb said.


No hydrants are near the home, forcing firefighters to haul tanks of water to the property, which was about a mile from Files Cross Road, Newcomb said.

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Newcomb said he was told that the family had gone to the store and was gone for 45 minutes to an hour before returning to discover the home was ablaze.


Newcomb did not know the owners of the home. The family was being assisted by the American Red Cross.


Bedington firefighters were assisted by personnel from Shepherdstown, Hedgesville, Baker Heights and South Berkeley fire departments in West Virginia, and Sharpsburg in Maryland, Newcomb said.
The cause of the fire is under investigation, Newcomb said.

— Matthew Umstead
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