SWANSEA, IL (KPLR) – Crews spent several hours Monday night working to put out flames after the home of Swansea Mayor James Rauckman caught on fire.
According to Swansea Fire Chief John McGuire, the fire began just before 6:00 pm, when the mayor’s 14 year-old son threw some hot, burnt food into a trash can on the patio behind the Ednick Drive home.
The food caught fire, and the flames shot up the back of the house, into the attic. The chief says the design of the house, with several roofs, made the fire especially tough to extinguish.
Since he knows the mayor personally, Chief McGuire says putting out this fire hit close to home. “They’re all bad, you don’t like to go to any of them, but this makes it a little worse,” he explains.
The chief says he isn’t sure whether the house is salvageable. However, no one was hurt; the 14 year-old was home alone when the fire began. A cat was also rescued from the home.
Chief McGuire says this instance serves as a good reminder to not put anything hot or burning in the trash, and to keep outdoor trash cans as far as possible from any buildings.