Heavy flames and sub zero temperatures made a difficult job for firefighters with the East Grand Rapids Department of Public Safety early Thursday, Dec. 28.

We first heard the call on the scanners before midnight, with dispatchers saying a home was fully involved in flames on Wealthy Street across from Spectrum Heatlh Blodgett Hospital. Temperatures in East Grand Rapids were -3 degrees at the time.

When firefighters arrived, they say heavy flames were coming from the back of the home and there was also heavy smoke. The flames eventually spread to the front of the home, near the garage.

Because of conditions, crews had to fight the fire defensively, from the outside of the building.

Firefighters don't know if anyone was home when the fire start. They say they knocked on the door but no one came out.

Workers with the hospital say they could smell the smoke from the hospital. They also they were keeping an eye on the water pressure levels, since firefighters had to use so much water to put the fire out.

It's not yet clear what started the fire.

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Matt Gard is the Senior Producer of the 13 Morning News. If you have a story idea, you can contact him on Twitter, @mgard_wzzm13 or by e-mail, MattGard@wzzm13.com.