The fire was reported at 5:52 p.m. Friday at the Elk Run Townhouses complex, according to fire investigator Fire Marshal Kathy Clay. Approximately 30 Fire/EMS members responded, making a quick attack on the fire, which was located on the bottom floor of the unit in the living room area. No one was in the unit at the time of the fire.
Fire attach crews were faced with heavy black smoke down to floor level upon entry of the unit. The fire was located and suppressed within five minutes. Crews immediately began searching the unit to determine whether there were occupants inside.
“The fire is an accidental fire,” Clay noted. “It appears that ashes were put into a plastic garbage can filled with combustibles under a coffee table in the living room. The ashes contained enough heat to cause ignition.”
Clay reminds everyone to check their smoke alarms monthly to ensure smoke alarms are operational. Smoke alarms should be placed in every bedroom and the hallway outside bedrooms and checked monthly.
“The sound of a smoke alarm kept this fire from getting big,” Clay said, “and it can save your life.”