WALTON _ Four occupants of an apartment house at 139 Prospect Ave. in Walton were left homeless Wednesday when the house was destroyed by a fire.

Walton Fire Department First Assistant Chief Jason Bojo said the department was called out at 3:01 p.m. and was still out of service at 8 p.m. He said a neighbor called 911 after he smelled smoke for about 45 minutes but couldn't determine the source until he saw the flames.

One of the occupants of the four apartments in the building was home at the time of the fire, Bojo said. He added that no one was injured, and there were no pets lost in the fire.

Bojo said he didn't have information on the identity of the occupants Wednesday.

He said the five fire departments that responded were hampered by problems accessing water because all of the nearby fire hydrants were frozen. He didn't identify the other departments that responded.

"We had to go about 800 feet to find a hydrant that wasn't frozen," Bojo said. "We just kept going from hydrant to hydrant until we found one that worked."

Bojo said the cause of the fire is under investigation by Delaware County Emergency Service, and the Red Cross was assisting the occupants.

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