At 11:25 p.m., a call came in to the Cloverdale Township Volunteer Fire Department of a house fire at 237 West County Road 1150S. Upon arrival, the house was fully involved.
"The roof was gone on half the house," Cloverdale Fire Chief Kerry Shepherd said. "The floor was too weak to put anybody inside. It had been burning for a while before anybody noticed it because it's so far off the road."
The house's location, back a wooded lane, gave the firefighters additional problems of access and water. Besides assistance with an engine from Greencastle Fire Department, Cloverdale also requested tankers from Cataract, Jefferson Township, Poland, Reelsville and the Indiana State Farm. Jefferson Township also covered the Cloverdale station.
Extreme cold temperatures also made for a tough night, as firefighters were on the scene until 3 a.m.
"It was a long, cold night," Shepherd said.
During the fire, an explosion injured Cloverdale reserve police officer Brooke Adams, who sustained a mild concussion and some bruises and cuts.
The Indiana Fire Marshal's office was called to investigate the incident. However, the investigator said a gas can found on the property had been there longer than initially believed.
"The state fire marshal's office was out there this morning, and nothing really jumps out at him," Shepherd said. "There was so much damage that it really wasn't safe to get in there and dig around too much. We're going to let the insurance company look into it."
The home, owned by John Winnick, was a total loss.
Firefighters returned at 9:12 a.m. Wednesday to extinguish some hot spots that flared up.