MARENGO – Most of a large garage already had collapsed by the time Marengo firefighters were called about 1:45 a.m. Friday to the scene of a fire.
A homeowner in the 18000 block of Church Road in Marengo initially tried to extinguish a fire in his garage by himself before calling for help, Marengo Fire Chief Robert S. Bradbury said.
When he tried to dial 911, his phone wasn’t working, and his cellphone was in his vehicle in the burning garage. The man went to several neighbors’ houses before he found someone who was home and could call the Marengo Fire Protection District.
Bradbury said most of the structure had collapsed before firefighters arrived, and the fire had spread to a small barn that housed sheep and chickens.
Fire crews successfully extinguished the flames, and no humans, chickens or sheep were injured.
The fire did not reach the man’s home.
Investigators said the fire’s cause is undetermined because the buildings were “completely destroyed,” Bradbury said.
The fire caused an estimated $120,000 in damage, including the buildings and the content inside them. Bradbury said the man appeared to have been using the garage as a sort of machine shed and had stored a lot of tools inside it.
Firefighters from Genoa, Hampshire, Woodstock, Boone County Rural, Huntley and Harvard units assisted Marengo crews at the scene.