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Fire destroys Maxwell home; Family escapes unharmed, but ‘they lost everything,' official says
A Maxwell family escaped a house fire with "just the clothes on their backs" on Tuesday, but the home was destroyed, officials said.
At about 2:30 a.m. Tuesday, Maxwell Fire Protection District responded to a report of a house fire on the 100 block of Central Avenue in Maxwell.
The homeowner, Alejandro Garcia, stood outside the house — wrapped in a blanket — with his family as firefighters contained the blaze. All of the residents made it out of the building safely.
"When I arrived, the occupants were out. Within 20 minutes, it was contained for the structure," said Maxwell Fire Chief Dave Wells. "It's a total. They need a new house. They lost everything — clothes, everything. They literally got out with just the clothes on their backs."
Garcia said early Tuesday morning that he believed the fire was set intentionally.
Prior to the blaze starting, Garcia said, he and his wife were in bed when she heard something going on outside. Garcia said his wife heard someone breaking into one of their vehicles. It sounded to her as if somebody dropped something in the process of trying to break into the car.
Shortly thereafter, Garcia said, the smoke alarms began going off and his wife realized there was a fire, at which point they evacuated the residence.
Wells said an investigation into the cause of the blaze is ongoing.
"We called in an arson investigation team, and the Sheriff's Department is involved, too," Wells said. "It's going to take some time to get to the facts."
Williams Fire Protection Authority and the Colusa County Sheriff's Office also responded to the fire.