|House fire on 5th Avenue results in fatality|
|January 26, 2012|
Updated: Scottsbluff Fire Chief Dana Miller announced that an elderly man now confirmed to be Sal Blanco, perished in the Thursday, Jan. 26 house fire at 1715 5th Avenue in Scottsbluff. The victim's wife, Ramona Blanco, was able to escape without injury.
An early report from a neighbor suggested that fireworks may have played a role in the blaze; however, Deputy State Fire Marshall Mike Turner has determined that hot ashes from a wood-burning stove that were improperly discarded is the cause.
The two-story home is determined to be a total loss with significant damage to the neighboring house to the south, which, at the time of the fire, was listed for sale.
At least a half dozen fire trucks responded to the blaze that was contained just after 9 p.m. Gering and Scottsbluff rural firefighters assisted the Scottsbluff fire department in fighting the blaze, which was reported at 8:23 p.m. Dozens of people gathered in the neighborhood in sympathy for the family.