MATTOON – A team from the Mattoon Fire Department was in the right place at the right time Monday afternoon to discover a fire in a driveway on Moultrie Avenue and help prevent it from spreading to the adjacent house and garage .
Chief Jeff Hilligoss said a crew was returning from refueling their rescue truck at the Mattoon Public Works Department building on DeWitt Avenue East when they saw smoke and followed them to household items fire at the northeast corner of Moultrie and Second streets. He said they called the blaze at 1:14 p.m., adding that the flames could have spread quickly past objects in the driveway had they not been nearby. Other teams quickly arrived on the scene.
“Within five minutes they had the fire in the spot where it had been shot and did not pose a threat to the garage or the house,” Hilligoss said. He said the fire shattered a window in the one-story house and damaged the vinyl siding in the garage.
No injuries were reported. Hilligoss said the occupant of the house arrived there shortly after the first fire crew. Hilligoss said the cause of the fire was still under investigation.
A rescue team from the Charleston Fire Department’s Rapid Response Team had been dispatched to this location as a precaution, but was canceled as Mattoon crews quickly brought the blaze under control. Officers from the Mattoon Police Department were also at the scene.
The plume of smoke from the fire was visible on the south side of Mattoon.