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ALTON - The Alton Fire Department didn’t have an easy job ahead when the Taylor Avenue or Hillcrest Avenue fire calls came in early Friday.

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The temperature outside was extremely frigid for both fires and both blazes were difficult in nature. Initially, firefighters were worried that a man might be trapped inside the home for the first fire, but it was later discovered he had been working out at a local gym. During the second fire, firefighters again had to search the home to make sure no one was present and had to fight the fire at the same time.

Alton Fire Chief Bernie Sebold said there were a few intense moments on Friday morning and the afternoon for his department, but mostly he is thankful the woman occupant of the house in the first fire and her son were able to get out of the home. He said he was also proud of the effort of his firefighting crew Friday morning. He also said the same about the second fire, that he was glad no one was present when it occurred and all the firefighters were safe.

“I am also thankful there were no injuries to the firefighters on this frigid morning,” the chief said. “There was a flow of water that created ice everywhere with about 40 feet in length. I think it was around 8 degrees or a little colder than that when the call came in.

“Whenever we get a report of occupants inside the fire or it is unknown, we try to do simultaneous operations. One we search to save lives as well as getting the fire knocked down and extinguished in a way that doesn’t jeopardize anyone. There were some very hectic moments when we arrived.”

Because of the work of the firefighters, both homes are repairable, Chief Sebold said.

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