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VIDEO: Fire badly damages house on Chmura Road in Hadley

  • Firefighters work on scene of a structure fire Saturday at Northern Creek Farm on Chmura Road in Hadley. Authorities said the home owned by Robert and Judith Pelis is likely a total loss. GAZETTE STAFF/SARAH CROSBY

  • Flames leap through the roof of a structure identified as Northern Creek Farm on Chmura Road in Hadley on Dec. 10, 2016. —GAZETTE STAFF/SARAH CROSBY

  • Emergency vehicles line Chmura Road in Hadley Dec. 10, 2016 while working on the scene of a structure fire. —GAZETTE STAFF/SARAH CROSBY



@StephMurr_Jour
Monday, December 12, 2016

HADLEY — A fire early Saturday afternoon badly damaged a house at 54 Chmura Road owned by Robert and Judith Pelis, according to Hadley Police, who reported no injuries.

Police said authorities were called at 12:53 p.m. for a reported car fire. The car was in the garage, and the fire quickly spread to the attached house.

A portion of Chmura Road remained closed two hours later as firefighters continued to battle the blaze. The fire was under control by 3:02 p.m., and emergency vehicles were cleared at 3:30 p.m., police said. The house is likely a total loss, police said.

Sgt. Ken Hartwright of the Hadley Fire Department said Sunday the department had no dollar estimate on the amount of damage. He said the second floor and garage of the house were “gone” but that walls on the first floor could be salvaged.

A GoFundMe page was also set up after the fire, and as of Sunday, had raised $100 for the Pelis family.

A man identifying himself as the homeowner requested that the media stay off the property as first responders fought the fire Saturday afternoon. The house was blackened and charred on one side and flames leaped through a hole in the roof. At 2:30 p.m., a Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency rehab vehicle arrived and provided first responders with coffee and doughnuts. Temperatures were in the high 20s Saturday.

The narrow, winding road was crowded with emergency vehicles. Ed Waskiewicz, who has lived on Chmura Road since 1982, came outside after his son telephoned him with news of the fire.

Waskiewicz said he has never seen such a bad fire in his neighborhood.

“I don’t remember anything like it,” Waskiewicz said, looking toward the smoky home.

According to Waskiewicz, Pelis lives across the street from his daughter. Waskiewicz said he often saw Pelis doing work on the daughter’s house.

“The guy works hard,” Waskiewicz said. “Then something like this hits, it’s terrible.”

A sign identifies the property where the fire occurred as Northern Creek Farm, which was founded in 1995, according to its website. It is a family-owned horse farm that provides boarding, horseback lessons and training. The facility includes two barns and two horse rings, according to the website.

The house was the only structure that burned.

Firefighters from Amherst, Northampton and South Hadley were also called to the scene. Sunderland firefighters provided station coverage in Hadley. The Massachusetts State Fire Marshal’s office was contacted, police said.

The Red Cross was called to assist the homeowners.