Malfunctioning boiler believed to have caused La Crosse house fire

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LA CROSSE, Wis. (WEAU) -- Winter is the American Red Cross’ busiest time of year to help families after fires.

Melissa Myers with the Scenic Bluffs Chapter in La Crosse said the Red Cross helps more than 70,000 people a year nationwide who are impacted by fires.

“It’s devastating year round and the Red Cross is here to help. We’re here 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year, regardless if it’s holidays or not,” said Myers.

The Red Cross is assisting a family of three who was displaced after a house fire at 1708 Winnebago Street in La Crosse.

Captain Dave Schneider said La Crosse firefighters were called around 4:30 Monday afternoon.

“They saw light smoke coming from the front door and heavier moderate smoke coming from the back of the structure,” said Schneider.

The fire department said the fire was found in a basement crawl space.

No one was hurt.

The fire department said the cause is under investigation, but it appears to be a malfunctioning gas fed boiler.

The home has moderate smoke and fire damage.

Myers said when there’s a fire or natural disaster, the Red Cross’ disaster action team meets with families to find out what their immediate needs are like shelter and food and helps provide those needs.

“This is what we do. This is why we’re here,” said Myers.

Myers says the Red Crosse Scenic Bluffs Chapter typically responds to 17 disasters a year within La Crosse County.


LA CROSSE, Wis. (WEAU) -- The Red Cross is helping a family after fire damaged their house.

It happened on Winnebago Street in La Crosse around 4:30 p.m. Monday. The La Crosse Fire Department says it found smoke coming out of the front door and the back of the house. Crews found the fire in a basement crawlspace and put it out. The home ended up with fire and smoke damage and minor water damage. Investigators say a malfunctioning gas fed boiler appears to have caused the fire when it burned the floor joists.

Nobody was hurt.

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