A house in the 200 block of Burdick Road was destroyed by fire early Sunday morning.
The Chesterton Fire Department responded to the scene—located in unincorporated Westchester Township—at 4:54 a.m. and found on arrival that the two-story house was already fully involved. “The roof was on the ground when we got there,” Interim Fire Chief Eric Camel said.
The home’s sole occupant at the time was able to safely evacuate the residence—through a basement window, with the family’s pets—after being awakened by smoke alarms and the barking of the dog. He was treated for smoke inhalation at the Franciscan Alliance ER department on Indian Boundary Road and subsequently released.
Assisting at the scene under mutual-aid agreements were the Porter, Liberty Township Volunteer, and Beverly Shores fire departments. The fire was struck at approximately 6 a.m. and the CFD then performed overhaul until clearing at the scene at 7:06 a.m.
The cause of the fire was listed as “undetermined-accidental,” given the extensiveness of the damage, Camel said. Camel did add that the house’s furnace failed several days ago and that “multiple space heaters” were being used to keep the home warm. The resident himself “suggested that a space heater might have been the culprit,” Camel said.
Attached are photos taken at the scene by the CFD.