Fire destroys shop, damages home; cause unclear

Fire destroyed most of a shop and home at 3304C Long St. on Wednesday, Dec. 9.

Joseph Tenbusch was the occupant. The owner is Robert Tenbusch of Stinnett, Texas. The house was located across from Hawthorne School.

Firefighters responded at 1:30 p.m.

Tenbusch told firefighters he was watching TV in the house when his power started to flicker, said Fire Chief Mike Beaver in the incident report. A neighbor described a loud pop and flash as fire broke out in the shop building.

Beaver was near the area when he received the call, he said. When he arrived, the shop was involved in fire, and a power line was down and arcing across a pickup truck.

The power line hindered the fire attack for the first units to arrive, Beaver said. The fire spread by heat into the living area of the house.

The shop was a total loss, making the investigation difficult, Beaver said. Both Tenbusch and a neighbor reported what they described as an electrical flash with a popping sound.

The main electrical panel, located on an outside wall, had extensive damage from inside, Beaver said. All wiring in and out of the panel had been subjected to an extreme power surge, which heavily damaged the panel.

Investigators place the cause of the fire to be a direct result of the power surge, he said.

Firefighter estimates place the value of the home, contents and vehicles at $205,000 and the damage at $170,000.

Firefighters were able to save some of Tenbusch’s personal possessions.

Sweet Home Fire and Ambulance responded with 24 firefighters, four engines and three support vehicles.

The Red Cross is assisting Tenbusch. The Firefighters Association also provided assistance. Anyone who wants to help is asked to contact the Red Cross at (800) 468-6755.