VANCLEAVE, MS (WLOX) - When Fire Chief Michael Belton first saw the burning home on Briarcrest Lane early Wednesday morning, he knew his job was not going to be easy.
"When we arrived on the scene, there was heavy flames showing from the west end of the house through the peak," said Belton. "At that point, we went ahead and attacked the fire and tried to get in knocked down."
Fortunately, there was some good news for the crew.
"We found no vehicles in the driveway. Luckily, the owner of the house was right down the road and he came out and said his nephew was staying here but he wasn't at home at the time."
The fire chief told WLOX News that fighting the fire was a risky proposition.
"They had some additions added. There was a lot of painting supplies inside the home because the fellow was an artist that was the renter, and it took a long time to get this fire under control," Belton added.
Officials say that while fighting any fire is a difficult job, when blazes occur in a rural area, with thin roads and no fire hydrants, it becomes even more challenging.
Belton noted, "It was very difficult. That's why we roll so much water on wheels. We have no hydrants here. We have an estimated 15,000 gallons of water on wheels here right now to extinguish this fire."
The county investigator is working to determine the point of origin, the exact cause of the fire could take a couple of days.