Space heaters, wiring could have been cause of early morning house fire

Tuesday, January 2, 2018
Marshall Fire Department extinguishes a Jefferson Avenue house fire in the early morning hours Tuesday, Jan. 2.
Contributed image

It was 3 degrees outside when Marshall firefighters worked to extinguish a house fire at 675 S. Jefferson Ave. early this morning, Jan. 2.

According to a Marshall Fire Department report, the department arrived at the home at approximately 1:20 a.m. to find heavy smoke coming from the roof. None of the smoke and fire had seeped into the downstairs living area, but instead was contained to the attic when MFD began working. Firefighters had to cut several entryways in the roof because of the building’s structure. The fire was deemed under control approximately an hour after they arrived.

There were no smoke detectors in the house, according to the report, and residents were alerted by either a neighbor or passerby. Fire Chief Tony Day said the residents’ furnace was not working and they were using several space heaters to keep the house warm. Although it has not been confirmed, he said it’s very likely the fire was started from a short circuit arc from defective wiring — that the electric use of the heaters overheated the wires and started the fire in the attic.

No one was injured from the incident, according to reports, and little of the property was damaged — an estimated 10 percent. MFD estimated a property loss value of $30,000 and a content loss value of $15,000 at most.

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