A rural Brainerd man was flown to a metro hospital early Saturday, Jan. 23, after suffering burns in a fire at his Wise Road mobile home.

Thomas Phillips, 55, was transported by ambulance to Essentia-St. Joseph’s Medical Center in Brainerd and later flown to Hennepin Healthcare hospital in Minneapolis by air ambulance. The Crow Wing County Sheriff’s Office reported Phillips, who was outside the home when emergency personnel arrived, suffered burns. It was unknown whether he suffered other injuries as a result of the fire. Hospital officials listed Phillips in satisfactory condition Sunday afternoon.

Sheriff’s deputies and Brainerd firefighters responded at about 12:39 a.m. Saturday to the house fire on the 8800 block of Wise Road.

“A passerby called in the fire,” said Sgt. Aaron Cronquist of the Crow Wing County Sheriff’s Office. “As far as I’m aware, the fire appears accidental at this time, but the cause is still under investigation by the Minnesota State Fire Marshal’s Office.”

A woman who Phillips told responders was his significant other was in the one-story structure with him at the time, but she was not injured, according to Brainerd Fire Chief Tim Holmes.

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“When we got there, a portion of the house was showing fire out the windows,” Holmes said.

Holmes said the structure is still standing but not suitable for occupancy in its current condition. He estimated the fire caused between $40,000 and $60,000 worth of damage.

“Flames were showing out the window on the one end of it. One end had probably pretty significant smoke and heat damage, but it was not totally burned up,” Holmes said. “It was mainly heat and smoke damage on probably half of the trailer.”

About two dozen firefighters were at the house fire and on the scene for about three hours, according to Holmes, but none of the firefighters were injured.

The Baxter Police Department, the Brainerd Police Department and North Memorial Health Ambulance Service assisted deputies at the scene.



FRANK LEE may be reached at 218-855-5863 or at frank.lee@brainerddispatch.com. Follow him on Twitter at www.twitter.com/DispatchFL.