Deputy injured in New Haven fire

·2 min read

May 10—NEW HAVEN — An historic house was a "total loss" following a Tuesday morning fire.

The house was located on Prairie Street in New Haven.

"We went to a defensive attack right from the start," Willard Fire & Rescue Chief Joe Reiderman said. "It went up fast."

Willard received mutual aid from Greenwich, Plymouth and Fairfield. In all, Reiderman said, there were about 25 firefighters on the scene, including mutual aid.

"It's undetermined," he said about the cause. "Nothing suspicious at this time. We had the state fire marshal's office come in and do an investigation."

There was a couple living in the house. The husband was treated at the scene for smoke inhalation.

There were also three dogs at the house.

A Huron County sheriff attempting to let one of the dogs out of the backyard was bitten and taken by ambulance to Mercy Health — Willard Hospital, Reiderman said.

All three dogs survived.

Road patrol sergeant Joe Schoewe suffered two lacerations and numerous puncture wounds to his left forearm, Chief Deputy Dave Ditz said. The injuries required 20-plus stitches.

"He actually stopped by the office today (Wednesday)," Ditz said. "He is in good spirits. He's a tough guy so I expect him back in limited duty tomorrow (Thursday). I'm just glad the family is OK and my deputy is OK.

"The dog was in a total fog of smoke and the homeowner was trying to get the dog out," he added. "Somehow the leash was dropped. Our deputy tried to grab the leash and that was when he was bit. You can understand how the dog felt with all of that commotion. Any dog can pick up on what is transpiring around him."

Reiderman said he appreciated all of the help his department received.

"The Friendship BP gas station brought a lot of food for the firefighters and family," he said. "And we got great help from the other departments and the sheriff's office.

"If nothing else it proved we really needed that levy. That first 10 minutes, you are working hard."