Preston, IA home burned in possible gas leak; owner injured

On August 16th, the Jackson County Sheriff’s Office got more than they bargained for when they responded to a Preston house swallowed by flames.

PRESTON, Iowa — On August 16th, the Jackson’s County Sheriff’s Office responded to a Preston home that caught fire. In a recently-distributed press release, the Sheriff;s Office released more details about the blaze.

According to Jackson County Sheriff Russ Kettmann, the fire broke out around noon in a home on Highway 64 In Preston, Iowa. Deputies responded to the scene along with various surrounding fire departments to discover the house completely engulfed in flames. The resident, who will go unnamed for privacy concerns, was able to speak with deputies before he was airlifted away from the scene with severe burns. The resident told the Sheriff’s Office that the only thing he could remember before the blaze began was him lighting a candle.

This testimony, along with scene analysis done by the Preston Fire Department introduce the possibility that the source of the fire could have been a gas leak causing an explosion inside the residence. The State of Iowa Fire Marshall was called to investigate the scene.

The Jackson County Sheriff’s Office was assisted by the Clinton County Sheriff’s Office, as well as Preston Police, Preston Fire and Ambulance, Miles Fire, Maquoketa Fire, Jackson County Regional Health Ambulance, Sabula Fire, Springbrook Fire, Charlotte Fire, Goose Lake Fire, and Air Care.

Gas leaks are typically caused by faulty appliances, usually when they were poorly fitted or badly maintained. The best defense against gas leaks is to regularly inspect appliances for sign of wear and tear, as well as make sure that they are installed by accredited engineers. The easiest sign of a gas leak in the home is the smell of gas, alongside dizziness and nausea caused by carbon monoxide.