Barn, vehicles destroyed by fire.

November 11, 2014

riverton_fire_111114cVideo included.

By Rob Alway. Editor-in-Chief. 

RIVERTON TWP. — Cindy and Raul “Rudy” Lopez were watching television around 9 p.m. at their home at 3413 W. Anthony Rd. Tuesday night when they discovered the barn next to their home was on fire.

“I was watching a movie and saw an orange glow outside,” Rudy said. “I thought at first it might have been the moon. Then I went to the other side of the house and saw the barn was on fire.”

riverton_fire_111114_aThe brick barn, located about 100 feet away, housed the couple’s three vehicles. Raul went outside to try to open up a garage door, but couldn’t because they were electric and the electricity had already shut off.

Riverton Township Fire Chief Joe Cooper was at his home a few miles north on Morton Road when he received the page. He went directly to the scene.

“It was fully engulfed when I got here,” Cooper said on the scene. “It had to have been burning for a time before they noticed it.”

The building contained a Ford F-150 pickup, a Jeep, and a Chevrolet Camaro. In addition to the couple’s three vehicles, the two story barn contained many household items. While their vehicles were insured, the Lopez’s do not have homeowner’s insurance.

Cindy and Raul have lived in the home, just west of Morton Road, for 16 years. Cindy said their evening routine is pretty much the same each day. When they come home, they put their vehicles in the barn and then shut the doors.

“We didn’t do anything different tonight,” she said. Chief Cooper said he was unsure of the fire’s origin. He declared the building a total loss soon after arriving. “Our strategy is to get some water on the fire and get it knocked down. But, I’m not going to risk anyone’s lives.”

Winds were blowing west-northwest at 15 to 25 mph and temperatures were hovering just about freezing, causing firefighting to be a little more of a challenge.

On scene were Riverton Twp. Fire Dept., Pere Marquette Twp. Fire Dept., Pentwater Fire Dept., Mason County Sheriff’s Office and Michigan State Police.


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