A fire broke out in a residential Goleta neighborhood Monday evening, severely damaging one house and resulting in the death of the occupants’ pet dog.
Santa Barbara County Fire Dept. spokeswoman Elsa Arndt said the blaze produced no other injuries. The fire completely destroyed the garage of the Wojcik family’s home at 239 Saratoga Ct. and burned portions of the kitchen and roof. A power line in front of the house had been severed, but Arndt said a preliminary investigation had determined the downed line was most likely a result of the fire, not the cause.
Firefighters responding to the 5:40 p.m. emergency call arrived to find the home’s garage and roof engulfed in flames and the fire threatening to spread to neighboring residences. Seven fire engines, more than 20 firefighters, a paramedic unit and several police vehicles converged on the scene and cordoned off the street in front of the burning house.
Arndt said firefighters quickly cleared fire breaks between the houses and began efforts to contain the blaze. Smoke was still billowing from the garage at 6 p.m., but most of the flames had been extinguished. By 7 p.m., both the amount of smoke and the number of bystanders, which numbered over 50 people, had diminished greatly.
It will take several days for fire department investigators to determine the cause of the fire, Arndt said. She estimated its cost at well over $2,400 in structural damage alone and said much of the family’s possessions were destroyed. She said the American Red Cross would be providing the family of one father, one mother and two teenage sons lodging until they can find new living arrangements.
22-year-old Anthony Anderson lives in one of the homes that was threatened by the blaze. He said the fire was already raging by the time he was alerted to it.
“I ran out here and there were 10-foot flames on top of the roof,” Anderson said.
Anderson expressed his gratitude that the firefighters were able to stop the flames from spreading to his house.
“It’s definitely a relief,” Anderson said. “Everything I’ve got is in here.”
The owners of the damaged house were not available for comment.