CHICO, Calif. - Three dogs were discovered dead inside a burning two-story structure near E. 9th Street in Chico on Tuesday afternoon.
Because of the location of the fire, traffic was diverted on Highway 32 between Orient and Flume streets until around 4:30 p.m.
The blaze was reported around 12:45 Tuesday afternoon on the 900-block of Orient Street. The structure was engulfed in flames when firefighters arrived on scene.
Eight fire engines and a ladder truck responded to the call, which equals every unit in the City of Chico Fire Department as well as crews from CALFIRE.
The quick moving blaze swept through the back of the home and into the attic.
And the scene turned tragic as firefighters dragged two pit bulls from the burning building as the dogs' owner looked on. The body of another dog, a Dachshund, was found inside as well.
A man says he stopped nearby for directions when the flames were spotted.
"The mailman was right there and he's looking at the house kind of funny, and he walks over to my car and says, 'Hey, you think I should call this in? I want to show you something,'" says Tim Olson. "And I said, 'What?' and we both looked at it and there were flames coming out under the eaves in the back porch. And we said, 'Yes, call it in right now. You can see flames coming out.' And we banged on the doors and no one appeared to be home."
Fortunately no one was home at the time and no injuries have been reported.
A bottom unit was not occupied but two people who live up stairs lost almost everything.
At this time, the cause of the fire is unknown.