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Simple mistake leads to Henrico house fire

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Posted at 1:26 PM, Jan 21, 2015
and last updated 2015-01-21 13:26:24-05

HENRICO COUNTY, Va. — A space heater sparked a morning house fire on Glenoa Road in Henrico. No one was injured in the fire, but four people who lived in the home were displaced.

“First arriving units reported smoke from the front of the building and the attic of the single story residence,” Henrico Fire spokesman Capt. Danny Rosenbaum said. “The fire was knocked down shortly after interior fire attack was made.”

The fire was marked under control at 8:30 a.m., about 15 minutes after it was first reported.

“The cause of the fire was determined to be accidental in nature and caused by a space heater placed too close to combustibles,” Capt. Rosenbaum said. “The American Red Cross will be assisting with those displaced by the fire.”

The Henrico Fire Department urged you take the following precautions to stay safe and warm this winter:

  • Keep anything that can burn at least three-feet away from heating equipment, like the furnace, fireplace, wood stove, or portable space heater.
  • Have a three-foot “kid-free zone” around open fires and space heater.
  • Never use your oven to heat your home.
  • Have a qualified professional install stationary space heating equipment, water heaters or central heating equipment according to the local codes and manufacturer’s instructions.
  • Have heating equipment and chimneys cleaned and inspected every year by a qualified professional.
  • Remember to turn portable heaters off when leaving the room or going to bed.
  • Always use the right kind of fuel, specified by the manufacturer, for fuel burning space heaters.
  • Make sure the fireplace has a sturdy screen to stop sparks from flying into the room. Ashes should be cool before putting them in a metal container. Keep the container a safe distance away from your home.
  • Test smoke alarms monthly.