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Fire destroys Reef Point home

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A Reef Point Road resident’s life may have been saved early Wednesday morning due to a working smoke alarm, Fort Frances Fire Chief Steve Richardson said.

The Watten Fire Protection Team responded to a fire reported at 4:20 a.m. after the only person home at the time woke up when he heard his smoke alarm, fled the home, and made the call from a neighbour’s house.

Volunteer firefighters arrived to find the basement of the home, located at 603 Reef Point Rd., ablaze, and called in for support from both the Fort Frances Fire Department and the Couchiching First Nation Volunteer Fire Department.

While crews battled the blaze all morning Wednesday, “the house was unfortunately destroyed,” said Chief Richardson.

The fire appears to have started in the basement, said Jerry Hoffman of the Watten Fire Department. The cause of the fire is still under investigation.

The resident, who was not named, was not injured in the fire.

“It just goes to show smoke alarms do save lives,” said Chief Richardson, adding that, by law, homeowners must have a working smoke alarm in their dwellings.

He suggested when residents turn back their clocks an hour this Saturday night, they might as well also check to see if the batteries in their smoke alarms are still working.

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