A HOUSE was completely destroyed and a family pet killed as fire ripped through a Carwoola home on Tuesday afternoon.
The Queanbeyan Fire Brigade was called to the Walga Close residence just after midday with flames quickly engulfing the fibro home.
A woman and an elderly couple were at home at the time the fire started, and managed to safely escape the property. The family's black Chihuahua was killed in the fire.
With no reticulated water supply in the area, Queanbeyan Fire Brigade officers called for assistance from their counterparts in the ACT. Around 10 fire engines from the NSW Rural Fire Service, the ACT Rural Fire Service, ACT Fire and Rescue and Fire Rescue NSW were on the scene within the next hour.
Queanbeyan Fire Station commander Wayne Huggins said the remote location of the house posed a challenge in getting water to the blaze.
"There's no reticulated water supply there, so we had to access water from nearby dams using RFS tankers and relay the water back to the fire. So when we first got there we lost water on a couple of occasions which hindered fire fighting operations," Commander Huggins said.
Queanbeyan police inspector Anthony Hill told The Queanbeyan Age that police weren't investigating the cause of the fire.
"We are not treating the fire as suspicious," he said. "At this stage we believe, [the cause of the blaze] may have been as a result of someone clearing ashes from a fire."
Fire crews worked at the site until around 5pm, but unfortunately the home was completely destroyed.
Commander Huggins urged locals to make sure their heaters and fire places are cleaned and ready for winter in the wake of the fire, and to be vigilant with wood heaters.
"Probably being distracted when taking the ash out is the issue here," he said.
"Even though it might not seem that the ash you're emptying out of the fire is hot, it's still going to hold lots of residual heat, and if it goes near anything combustible, it will ignite.
"Especially during the transition period into winter, people are breaking out electric blankets again, fires that haven't been used, flues that haven't been cleaned... You just have to exercise caution and be vigilant," he said.