No one injured in house fire near Milner |

No one injured in house fire near Milner

Mike Lawrence

— There were no injuries resulting from a fire that fully engulfed a home Monday night on U.S. Highway 40 just west of Milner. The home remained standing but appeared to suffer extensive damage.

Routt County Sheriff's Office deputies and firefighters from the Steamboat Springs Rural Fire Protection District and West Routt Fire Protection District responded shortly after 8 p.m. to the blaze that sent clouds of smoke billowing into the night sky.

Luke Berlet said he was watching TV when his daughter, Abi, 8, told him she smelled smoke from the basement. Berlet said he saw flames in the basement and ushered Abi, 6-year-old Joey and 4-year-old Johnny outside, along with the family dog. Every human and pet made it out of the house safely.

"They threw their shoes on and ran outside," Berlet said about his children, who sat in the family car in their pajamas while firefighters fought the flames and smoke.

Berlet said he had time to grab a few things before leaving the house.

Sheriff's Office Deputy Paul Yonekawa said the cause of the fire is under investigation and would not be known until at least today.

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According to the Routt County Assessor's database, the single-family home has two bedrooms and 1 1/2 baths on the main floor. The home also has a partial basement.

The slow, evening traffic on U.S. 40 was reduced to traveling in one lane past the house Monday night as firefighters had to bring a water truck to the scene. A Colorado Department of Transportation employee who lives in the area helped direct traffic.

— To reach Mike Lawrence, call 871-4233 or e-mail

To help

A fund to help the Berlet family, in their name, has been set up at Alpine Bank, 1901 Pine Grove Road in Steamboat Springs. Call the bank at 970-871-1901.