Wind, cold slow fire effort at Waukesha house

CREATED Jan 13, 2013 - UPDATED: Jan 13, 2013

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WAUKESHA - The cold weather made it hard for firefighters to handle a house fire out in Waukesha Sunday afternoon.
 
They were still on scene more than six hours later.
 
"I'm just sick," Robert Look says. "What are you going to do?"
 
Look had to see it for himself. A fire ravaged an old farm house on Big Bend Road Sunday afternoon that has been in his family for ages.
 
"I put so much money into that house," Look says. "I sided it, insulated it, I did a lot of work around there."
 
The 85-year-old's son lives in the house in Waukesha. A mechanic spotted smoke shortly after 3 p.m. Sunday when he stepped out of a nearby garage that houses a bunch of collector's cars.
 
"They got them out," Look says. "They all had batteries in them. They must have all started and got them out of there."
 
But, it took firefighters more than five hours to put out the fire that worked its way through the home's interior walls.
 
"The cold weather is the biggest challenge today," Waukesha Fire Department Chief Dan Buchholtz says. "Everything is ice and the wind didn't help us much either."
 
At one point, they brought in salt trucks to treat the road and driveway.
 
"It kept the road so we could travel it," Buchholtz says. "It kept the scene so firefighters weren't slipping and slidding all over. Yeah, the salt trucks were a big help."
 
No one was home when the fire started.
 
A firefighter suffered a minor injury after falling on ice.