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An Evanston firefighter is in stable condition at Evanston Hospital after being injured while fighting a Christmas morning blaze on Laurel Avenue.

Deputy Fire Chief Tom Janetske says the state fire marshall’s office has been called in to investigate the cause of the fire which was reported at 5:07 a.m.

An Evanston firefighter is in stable condition at Evanston Hospital after being injured while fighting a Christmas morning blaze on Laurel Avenue.

Deputy Fire Chief Tom Janetske says the state fire marshall’s office has been called in to investigate the cause of the fire which was reported at 5:07 a.m.

Janetske says Engine 21, the first unit at the scene, found heavy flames coming from the house and garage at 1809 Laurel.

Additional alarms were sounded bringing a total of 53 firefighters from 18 companies from Evanston and several surrounding communities to the scene.

The fire gutted the home at 1809 Laurel and melted siding from the house next door at 1807 Laurel.

Garages behind the buildings at 1807 through 1811 Laurel were also destroyed by the fire.

A firefighter looks through the rubble of one of the destroyed garages.

Janetske says that the building at 1807 was vacant and no one was home at 1809 Laurel when the fire broke out.

Power was out this morning to the three-unit townhouse building on the corner of Laurel and Lyons that houses 20 people next to the fire scene, and Janetske said power may also have been out to some other homes in the immediate area. But a ComEd crew was able to restore the power later in the day.

A state fire marshal’s K-9 unit was on the scene to help determine the cause of the blaze.

Janetske said he had no reports of injuries to civilians from the fire. In addition to the hospitalized firefighter, who was expected to remain in the hospital overnight for observation, two other firefighters suffered minor injuries.

Janetske said officials had been able to reach the owners of the home at 1809 Laurel and that they had homeowner’s insurance. He said fire investigators would be working with the insurance company to determine the cause of the blaze. He estimated damage from the fire at $450,000.

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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1 Comment

  1. Thank you for your dedication and service!

    I just want to take a moment to thank the Firefighters for the job they do. As we saw in Chicago last week, the job they do can take the ultimate toll. The two heroes that lost their lives in Chicago and left families behind, will never be forgotten! Luckily the firefighters injured in Evanston  escaped without serious injury! However, it is just another reminder of what the men and women that serve and protect Evanston face. While the  vast majority of Evanstonians were "snuggled in their bed with visions of sugar-plums …." the brave men and women of the police and fire departments were putting their butts on the line. So, in this season of celebration and parties, let us not forget those who are willing to sacrafice everything for us!

    Ps .. I also find it a bit disturbing that twenty-some people took the time to comment on the horror of an un-shoveled walk, yet no one bothered to take the time to thank the fire department for another job well done ….

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