Portland Fire & Rescue investigators have determined the cause of the house fire this morning. Combustibles too close to a baseboard heater sparked the fire that displaced two people. The fire severely damaged the home and caused an estimated $80,000 in damage.
There have been numerous fires caused by heating devices in the metro area since the weather has turned colder. Any device that creates heat needs a space of about three feet around it clear of anything that will burn.
The home did not have a working smoke alarm and the two young men who escaped the fire this morning were very fortunate to have survived.
Keep yourself and your family safe by reading the warnings and recommendations that come with all portable heating devices. And remember:
- Install a smoke alarm in every bedroom, one outside the bedrooms, and one on every level of your home. Test your smoke alarms every month.
- Space heaters need space. Keep combustibles at least three feet away from each heater.
- When buying a space heater, look for a control feature that automatically shuts off the power if the heater falls over.
At 4:50 am this morning, Portland Fire & Rescue firefighters responded to the report of a house on fire on SE 76th Avenue. Prior to the arrival of firefighters, a Portland Police sergeant on patrol in the area reported that the house was "fully engulfed in flame."
For more information, visit http://www.newsbridge.net/Portland_Fire_and_Rescue/.
Photos by Dick Harris, Portland Fire & Rescue
November 3, 2009