Two fires raged in Morgan County just a couple of days before the New Year.
On Saturday, Dec. 30, a single-family house on Brobston Lane went up in flames. The family was not home at the time of the fire, but the family’s pet pit bull was killed in the fire.
“It was a sweet pit bull,” said Fire Chief Jeff Stone.
Stone lamented that the house was effectively decimated by the fire.
“For all practical purposes, it was a total loss,” said Stone. “At least 70 to 80 percent damage to the house.”
Stone reported that when fire personnel arrived at the scene, flames were already raging out of the roof.
“Such a terrible loss,” said Stone. “There’s never a good time to lose your home, but this time of year is especially awful.”
Just two days before the Brobston Lane fire, another house caught fire on Jones Wood Lane on Thursday, Dec. 28. The family arrived home to find the garage ablaze. The fire damaged the garage, a bonus room above it and part of the main house. No one was injured during the fire.
A cause for either fires has not been determined.
“Both are being investigated,” said Stone.
Stone issued a general warning for citizens, especially during winter months to help prevent fires from starting.
“We do see an increase of fires this time of year because people are trying to stay warm and end up using space heaters or other heating alternatives that when left unattended can set an entire house ablaze.”
Stone also noted chimney fires are also common in the winter months.
“With temperatures dropping the way they are, we see more fires from people using their chimneys or alternative heat sources,” said Stone.
Stone urges citizens to have their chimneys cleaned at least once a year by a professional cleaning company.
“People try to use the cleaning logs, but those are not sufficient,” said Stone. “I’d prefer people not use space heaters at all, but if you do, make sure to keep it away from walls, furniture, cloths, fabrics, and never leave it unattended.”
“We want everyone to be extra safe out there to do what they can to help prevent fires from happening in their homes,” said Stone.