Intense flames ravaged a lakeside home Thursday night in Merrimack, New Hampshire, forcing two people inside to take drastic measures to escape the fire.
“The house was just fully engulfed in flames and then within maybe 30 minutes, it just started collapsing,” witness Haylee Laurencelle said.
Heavy fire broke out at a Baboosic Lake home on Shore Drive just before 7 p.m., fire officials said, destroying the building and causing it to collapse.
“The reports while we were en route indicated that there may be people trapped and/or jumping from the house,” said Merrimack Fire Chief Matthew Duke, “One occupant exited out of what we believe to be the second floor porch on the lake side of the house, and was assisted by some bystanders and was subsequently transported to the hospital.”
“I did see somebody running down and waiving their arms and got picked up by boat,” said Laurencelle.
Laurencelle was on another boat on the lake when she saw what is believed to be the Good Samaritan boater helping the owner of the home.
The owner’s son didn’t want to go on camera but says his mother who jumped from the porch, and grandfather who was also in the home, are recovering from their injuries in the hospital.
A family dog is believed to have died in the fire.
“It’s a tragic loss for all of them," Laurencelle said. "It really stinks but I’m really hoping that they can recover from it and we’re all here to help them.”
The tight-knit lake community is still reeling from an explosion and fire in May, that blew windows into Baboosic Lake.
Laurencelle said, “To see it a second time was just like insane.”
Both that home on the Amherst side of the lake and this home on the Merrimack side are a total loss.
“As the fire went on, some portions of the house did collapse,” said Chief Duke, “and then ultimately in order to fully extinguish the fire, we had to bring heavy equipment in to crush, to collapse the rest of the building intentionally.”
Two firefighters were transported to the hospital. They’ve since been treated and released.
State and local fire marshals are investigating the cause and origin of the fire.