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Regent home damaged in fire

REGENT -- A farm house west of Regent was extensively damaged by a Monday night fire, which firefighters believe was started by an electric water heater. No one was injured.

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Regent Fire Chief Terry Hartman said his crew received a call from one of the homeowners, Shane Magelky, at 7 p.m. Magelky was on his way back from New England, and saw smoke coming from the house’s windows.

Firefighters extinguished the flames within minutes, Hartman said, aided by a copper water line that also broke, which put out parts of the fire.

“If that pipe wouldn’t have broken, that house might not be still standing,” Hartman said.

The rural home was burnt extensively in its basement and living room. Upstairs rooms were badly damaged by smoke, Hartman said.

The fire chief said he was surprised that the water heater could have started a fire.

“You don’t see it that often,” Hartman said.

Clean-up crews may still be able to salvage the house, he said.

Shane and Lindsay Magelky declined to comment on this story.