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Saturday February 13th, 2016 8:02AM

House burns off Old Cornelia Hwy., blocks rush hour traffic

By B.J. Williams News Director
GAINESVILLE - An early morning house fire in the eastern part of Hall County prompted the closure of Old Cornelia Highway for several hours Friday.

According to Hall County Fire Marshal Scott Cagle, the call came in to authorities around 4:05 a.m. He said a passerby noticed the flames and called 911.

When firefighters arrived, the 1,300-square-foot house was about 50-percent involved in fire, with flames shooting from the roof of the structure. Because the roof was beginning to collapse, Cagle said firefighters opted to fight the blaze from outside the home. The house was destroyed.

Cagle said the homeowner told authorities the house had been vacant about a month, but electricity had not been turned off. He said investigators would check to see if an electrical problem might have sparked the fire.

Old Cornelia Highway was closed until about 7 a.m. because equipment was blocking the roadway.

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