Home lost to fire near Ashland

Deep snow slowed firefighters trying to get to a burning home on Dead Indian Memorial Road late Thursday night, contributing to the complete destruction of the structure.

No one was home at the time of the fire and there were no injuries reported. However, two dogs and a cat were taken to Ashland Community Hospital where they were treated for severe smoke inhalation, according to Jackson County Fire District No. 5 officials.

The home belonges to Mark and Abby Buktenica and their three children, ages 13, 15 and 17. Mark Buktenica is a biologist at Crater Lake National Park.

A donation account has been set up for the family at Key Bank.

The Buktenicas returned home before 11 p.m. Thursday to find their house on fire with their pets inside.

The call came in to District Five firefighters at 10:40 p.m. and three Ashland firefighters were on site by 11 p.m., according to District No. 5 officials. Two feet of snow covered the driveway so crews had to hike a quarter-mile to the fire. By the time they arrived, the house was completely engulfed in flames.

They broke in through a sliding door to rescue two dogs and a cat. They took the animals to the hospital to be treated for severe smoke inhalation.

There were three fire engines and three watertenders that were not able to drive up the snowy driveway.

Many of the houses in the area are at risk due to the limited access for emergency vehicles during snowy conditions, according to fire officials.

Crews assessed there was nothing to save and let the fire consume the house. Eventually the first engine on the scene got chained up and drove up to fight the fire.

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