An early morning fire March 13 caused $5 million in damages after two beachfront homes were burned to the ground south of Rehoboth Beach.
Firefighters responded to the fire at 3:10 a.m. on Sand Dune Drive, a row of homes nestled between the ocean and Silver Lake.
Rehoboth Beach Volunteer Fire Co. Spokesman Warren Jones said two homes were in flames when firefighters arrived. “They were pretty well burnt up,” he said. Three neighboring homes were damaged by the fire, which shattered windows and burned siding.
“Sixteen fire companies from Bethany Beach to Slaughter Beach and just about everything in between responded to the fire or provided support,” Jones said.
The fire was brought under control by 5:29 a.m., but more than five hours later the demolished homes were still smoldering.
High wind, extreme cold and low-water pressure hampered firefighting efforts, he said.
“We ended up drafting water out of Silver Lake,” he said.
Firefighters also laid lines connecting to a Rehoboth Beach city hydrant; others fought the fire from the Dewey Beach side. The properties lie in a small strip beachfront property inside Dewey Beach’s northern boundary, said David Main, owner of one of the homes that burned.
The homes were unoccupied. One firefighter was taken to Beebe Healthcare where he was treated for a cut head, said Harry R. Miller, chief deputy state fire marshal.
Miller said the fire caused $5 million in damages. The origin and cause of the fire is still under investigation, he said.
More information will be posted when available.
Editor’s note: This story has been updated to reflect that the homes that burned are in Dewey Beach.