Subzero temperatures and a barrage of exploding ammunition complicated a home fire that left one Lincoln firefighter with a bullet wound to the wrist this week.
The mobile home fire was reported just before 10 p.m. Tuesday on 4X4 Road about 5 miles outside Lincoln, Fire Chief Zach Muse said. The fire started in the chimney and burned the home to the ground.
Nine firefighters battled the blaze for about eight straight hours before returning to town Wednesday morning to refuel a pumper truck and get more water, he said. The firefighters who didn’t have to return to their day jobs came back around 9 a.m. and remained on the scene well into Wednesday afternoon, he said.
Firefighters had to take cover for about 30 minutes when the large supply of ammunition inside the home started exploding, Muse said.
“We had to get back and hide, and we had one guy get hit in the wrist. I’m not sure yet if it’s fractured or not, but it swole up pretty good,” he said. “He was actually hiding behind one of our pumper trucks and still got hit.”
The explosions also reignited portions of the fire that had been extinguished, Muse said.
“The ammo really made it tough because there were powder kegs blowing off the walls, and it got everything rolling again that we just put out,” he said.
With temperatures hovering around 10-15 degrees Fahrenheit, firefighters had to take extra precautions to ensure their water didn’t freeze. They also had to dismantle the home’s tin walls and roof piece by piece to allow the water inside.
And the six cords of firewood stacked by the front door made matters worse.
“Everything that could go against us kind of did,” Muse said.
The husband and wife who lived in the home were able to get out safely before spending the night with their neighbors. If officials receive any information about how to help the family, Muse said he will post it on the fire department’s Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/lincolnfirerescue/.