UPDATE (12/16) - The SBI was requested to investigate the cause of the house fire on Starfish Lane. Due to the complete destruction of the house, the cause of the fire remains undetermined. The investigation is ongoing.
HOLDEN BEACH, NC (WWAY) -- Traveling over the bridge onto Holden Beach this morning drivers could see a fire blazing down the road. The flames destroyed two homes and the damage didn't stop there.
"We heard the sirens coming down the road. Thought maybe, you know, they were pulling a speeder or something," vacationer Heidi Michael said. "Then my oldest child came running upstairs. He heard the sirens and saw the glow out of his window and said that there was a house fully engulfed, so we went out on the porch and watched from there and saw that it was huge; just huge."
The fire damaged two other houses and two boats and destroyed two other boats. Firefighters say it's the most significant fire Holden Beach has seen in a while.
The flames started at 115 Starfish Drive just before 5 a.m. damaging neighboring homes, including a total loss next door.
Tri-Beach Volunteer Fire Chief Doug Todd says thankfully no one was hurt.
"There was nobody home at either residence. That was a good aspect, that we didn't have to worry about the threat of life in either home," he said. "We do have two homes that were severely damaged by fire. We have several more that have some heat damage and like I said we had a couple boats that burned and a couple boats that have some heat damage to them."
Some neighbors said they almost decided to come down and try and save their boats until they got close and saw just how big the fire was. That's when they realized that if it weren't for a big open lot this fire might have spread and damaged their homes.
"We were about two blocks down on the ocean side, and we could see it above the highest houses," Michael said. "It was incredibly high."
A power outage in the area included the fire station. That meant volunteer firefighters responding had to open the garage door manually to get the fire truck out. Officials say it was not a significant delay, though.
No word yet on how the fire started.