A fire heavily damaged a home in the 5000 block of West Griffin Creek Road. (Cell phone photo by Mandy Valencia)

Fire burns much of West Griffin Creek Road home

Updated at 1:30 p.m. with video

A fire ripped through about half of a hilltop home on West Griffin Creek Road this morning.

Fire crews said no one was at the home when the fire started, but numerous calls from neighbors came in about the blaze, which sent up a column of black smoke that could be seen from Medford and Highway 99.

Medford Fire-Rescue responded without knowing the exact address of the fire. Crews found the burning two-story home in the 5000 block of West Griffin Creek Road, which is actually in Applegate Valley Rural Fire Protection District No. 9, and attacked the flames while Applegate crews made their way to the house, Medford on-call fire investigator Samantha Metheny said.

Two water trucks each carrying 2,000 gallons of water worked at the scene and another water-tanker was expected to arrive to help, she said.

"When the first callers called in there was heavy involvement on the west side of the house," said Operations Chief for the Applegate Valley fire district, Chris Wolfard, "when Medford fire got out here, they were able to stop the fire from progressing to the east and the second half of the house, unfortunately the west side is a complete loss."

The fire had ripped through a living room and upper story, but had been stopped before it moved into the other half of the home. Firefighters removed vintage sports cars from the garage, saving them.

"Figuring out which driveway lead to the column of smoke was the problem," said Wolfard, "we're going to be here putting out hot spots for a least a couple more hours, and we'll probably have crews on scene for 10 or 12 more hours after that."

— Mandy Valencia

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