BRADSHAW, Neb. -- The fire at a Bradshaw home last Monday has been declared accidental according to the Fire Marshall's office. No other information about the cause has been released at this time.
Firefighters began battling a fire at a Bradshaw home Monday night, but flames weren't the only reason multiple crews were on the scene. The heat index value was at 115 according to the Bradshaw Fire Chief and it made things harder.
The home on Road G just a few miles from Hwy 34 is a complete loss. The Bradshaw Volunteer Fire Department responded to the call at 6:36 pm and quickly realized they needed backup because of the intense heat.
"It takes a toll on you real quick. And that's one of the reasons we had four departments out there, because we had...needed the man power to rotate in and out so we don't overwork," said Brian Wolfe, the Bradshaw Fire Captain.
And things weren't any easier for fire chief Todd Hellerich.
"It makes it a lot more difficult because it's a stressful enough situation when you're trying to run a scene where you have four or five departments coming in and then add the heat stress on top... it's very physically demanding," said Hellerich.
To keep everyone safe, the firefighters would rotate out once they used up one air bottle on their breathing equipment, which is around 25 minutes. And EMS on scene would check each firefighter's vitals and give them water to drink so they could stay properly hydrated. Wolfe said the moment they got the call, all the firefighters immediately started drinking as much water as they could.
"If you were there yesterday, you would have seen they had bottles of water in almost every pocket of their gear they have so they can be drinking," said Hellerich.
In addition to staying hydrated, the firefighters used extra equipment to keep from burning up.
"One of the departments brought some cool vests, which have ice packs inside of them, you can put on underneath your jacket. And that helps quite a bit. It gives you that cool inside your jacket and helps break down the heat a little bit, let's you last a little bit longer," said Wolfe.
The fire department had to go to the house three times before they were able to fully extinguish the fire. They didn't finish until around 9:30 am Tuesday morning.
Crews from four fire departments are still working to put out a house fire in York County.
Bradshaw Fire and Rescue responded to the initial call around 6:30 p.m. Monday.
Bradshaw then called for mutual aid from Henderson and Hampton Fire and Rescue, along with the York Fire Department.
When crews arrived at the home, the entire south side of the home was in flames.
Bradshaw Fire and Rescue told 10/11 News the home is a total loss. They said the home owner was inside when the fire broke out. The homeowner heard a loud bang, realized his home was on fire and went to a neighbors home to call 911.
Perennial Public Power District in York was also called to the home, to shut off the power.
Along with battling the flames and smoke, crews are also fighting the hot weather. 10/11 News Reporter Taylor Barth saw many firefighters pour water on themselves to stay cool. A man also pulled up to give firefighters sandwiches and Gatorade.