Fireworks may have played a role in the Tuesday night fire that partially destroyed an Indian Bayou home.
"That's more than likely what it is, but we can't say that definitively," Fire Chief Kevin Sasser told The Log. "The homeowner didn't see what caused the initial fire."
The initial call came in about 9 p.m. on New Year's Eve and firefighters spent more than four and a half hours battling the blaze that had already engulfed a vast majority of the home, which is owned by William and Dana Chandler of the Donut Hole restaurants.
“When we pulled up there was smoke and flames coming out of the roof,” said Battalion chief Mike Urenda.
The owners were “shook up,” and there were no injuries, but there was significant damage to the 5,000-square-foot home and it wasn’t safe for dwelling, according to Urenda.
Trucks from Fort Walton Beach, Okaloosa Island, South Walton and North Bay also responded to the fire and answered other calls throughout Destin as firefighters spent more than four and a half hours totally extinguishing the blaze. In that time, firefighters responded to 15 to 20 other emergency situations, mostly of a medical nature.
“It was busy a day,” Urenda said.
The fire is the second major house fire in Destin in recent weeks. On Dec. 14 a fire gutted the Primrose Circle home of Sarah Fleming and her family. After The Log story and photos were published, the community responded with an outpouring of donations.
In this case, The Log was told that the family wasn't in need of any donations, but some people close to the family are urging the community to show its support by dining at the Donut Hole, according to multiple posts to The Log's Facebook page.