At approximately 3 p.m. Friday, November 18th, Pope County 911 dispatchers received a 911 call reporting a structure fire located at 304 Avenue 1 NE in Atkins. The caller advised dispatch that flames and heavy smoke were exiting the structure and they believed the home was vacant due to the windows being boarded up.
After receiving the report, the Atkins and Pea Ridge Fire Departments were dispatched to respond to structure fire.
Atkins Police officers heard the call being dispatched and responded to the address. Upon their arrival, they updated dispatchers by stating the house was fully involved.
Atkins and Pea Ridge firefighters checked en route to the scene and command was established on scene. As firefighters arrived, they began to fight the blaze that consumed the residence. Command radioed dispatch and requested the response of Entergy but stated it was unknown if the house was supplied with natural gas.
Through the use of two deck guns on two of Atkins Fire Department’s engines, they initiated their attack spraying water on the roof of the house. Additional firefighters fought the growing blaze that had burned through one side of the residence from the ground. Firefighters were not only tasked in battling the flames exiting the involved structure but also worked to protect a neighboring home from the intense heat created by the fire. Firefighters sprayed the neighboring home with water as well as the trees that surrounded it in order to protect the residence from radiant heat damage and from possibly igniting.
Despite the efforts of firefighters, the home was destroyed due to the aggressiveness of the blaze.
During the fire, the Pottsville Fire Department arrived on scene with an engine to offer assistance in the fight. Firefighters remained on scene throughout the afternoon and into the evening to maintain control of flames and to protect the surrounding property.
According to a resident who lives in the area, the windows of the home had been boarded up a day of two earlier and to their knowledge no one was living in the residence.
After the fire was determined to be under control and then later extinguished, firefighters returned to their stations available for service.
On Saturday afternoon, the Atkins Fire Department was dispatched to the address for a second time, for a possible rekindle after small flames were seen burning in the debris that remained at the location.
Residents are advised that the debris that remains from the fire will continue to smolder causing smoke for some time.
Fortunately, no injuries were reported in the incident and firefighters were able to protect the property of others. The cause of the fire remains under investigation.
The following video was captured from the scene of the fire.