2018-01-10 / Front Page

Family flees early morning blaze

810-452-2684 • skovac@mihomepaper.com

Justin Holsworth Justin Holsworth MAPLE VALLEY TWP. — Family members fled their burning home into sub-zero temperatures early Friday morning.

At 2:39 a.m., the Brown City Fire Department was called out to the structure fire at 2840 Wellman Line Road near Shephard Road.

All seven members of the Justin Binkley family were home at the time and escaped the flames without injury. A family member telephoned the fire department.

As firefighters braved a minus 19-degree wind chill, the Red Cross kept the family warm in a van.

“Conditions were absolutely brutal,” said Brown City Fire Chief Justin Holsworth. “Everything was freezing up. It was hard on us. One fire fighter was taken to the hospital suffering from smoke inhalation, otherwise no one was hurt.”

Holsworth believes the fire was started by some type of wood burning stove or fireplace insert.

“The structure is still standing. It’s not a total loss, but it sustained heavy smoke and water damage,” said Holsworth.

Fire Departments from Speaker, Mussey, Elk, and Goodland townships, along with Yale- Brockway assisted in battling the blaze.

The Red Cross provides money and two nights lodging for fire victims, said Brad Harris, volunteer coordinator of Red Cross Disaster Relief for Sanilac County.

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