GENOLA, Utah County — A rare house fire early Friday kept fire crews busy as they tried to battle both the flames and subzero temperatures.

The fire was reported by a passerby about 3 a.m., though firefighters believe it had been  burning for one or two hours before that.

The home was vacant as the homeowners were in the process of moving. Genola Fire Chief Greg Smith said the layout of the home made it a tough fire to fight.

"It's one of those homes that has been remodeled, remodeled and remodeled, so it has false walls, all these little cubby holes that have been boxed in and Styrofoam insulation that keeps popping up," he said.

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Firefighters were able to briefly go inside to battle the blaze but were forced to retreat and fight the fire from a defensive mode after the roof started to collapse, Smith said.

In addition to the heat of the fire, crews battled the extreme cold outside. An ambulance was on site to make sure firefighters had fluids going through them and to give them a chance to warm up. Water was also frequently circulated to make sure it didn't freeze inside the fire trucks or hoses.

The cause of the fire was still under investigation. Damage was estimated at $150,000.

Pat Reavy Twitter: DNewsCrimeTeam