Body found inside garage after Meridian home set on fire

MERIDIAN, Idaho (KBOI) -- Investigators say a body was found in the garage after a home burst into flames in Meridian late Thursday evening.

Deputies said a passerby or neighbor called 911 when they noticed the fire. It was fully engulfed when crews arrived to the house around 11:30 p.m. Firefighters worked for hours fighting flames and overcoming challenges at the house fire near the corner of Black Cat Road and Chinden Boulevard Thursday night.

The Ada County Sheriff's office is investigating it as an arson.

Late Friday afternoon, the coroner said the body has not been positively identified and further forensic testing is underway.

The house's driveway is several hundred feet long, and Ada County Sheriff deputies say fire crews had problems getting water to the house.

"From what I understood from the firemen is that there was not a fire hydrant," said Sergeant Matt Clifford. "They had to bring water in, ya know a water tender truck and use that and pipe the water all the way down the drive to fight the fire. They said they had over 1,400 feet if hose, so that's a lot of hose." Photos from the Scene

Mike Siron calls this area a small and agricultural community. He and his family have lived on this quiet house for 30 years. He says waking up to a fire truck is rare- so last night it tipped him off that something was wrong.

"I walked down to the end of the lane and saw flames 50-60 ft in the air," Siron said. "It just went so fast- within an hour the house was gone."

Siron says he has known the family who lived in the home for 25 years. He says they have lived there for more than 30 years.

"I thought everyone was OK because I saw people with blankets watching the blaze, which is heartbreaking to see that - them losing their home.

Smoke from the two-alarm fire could be seen from about two miles away on Chinden. Firefighters from Eagle, Star, and Meridian were here in the bitter cold for several hours knocking down flames. Ada County Deputies said the house is a total loss.

Sargent Clifford also said cold temperatures created difficulties. Frozen water on the ground made this road a safety hazard and ACHD had to be called in to melt the ice. An extra van was also called in to help keep investigators warm.

Stay with KBOI for updates.