On Sunday, November 6, at approximately 5:26 p.m. units from Fairfax County Fire and Rescue responded to a report of a house fire in the 13400 block of Lake Shore Drive located in the Hunter Mill District of Fairfax County.
First arriving units reported fire showing from the rear of a two-story, single family home. Firefighters were able to bring the fire under control approximately 12 minutes after arrival.
At the time of the fire, the home was occupied by five adults. An occupant in the home discovered the fire which was outside at the chimney.
The fire investigation revealed that the fire originated in the chimney and was caused by radiant heat that ignited combustible materials from the fire box in the chimney. The fire place was being used at the time of the fire.
A total of four occupants were displaced as a result of the fire. Red Cross assistance was offered but was declined. There were no civilian or firefighter injuries reported. Damage to the home was estimated at $46,875.00.
The Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department would also like to remind all residents to use their fireplaces safely by following the below safety tips:
- Ensure that your chimney is cleaned and inspected by a licensed professional once a year.
- Follow manufacturer’s instructions carefully. Many “non-masonry” fireplace/chimney units have limitations on the amount of heat they can safely withstand.
- A spark arrestor across the top of a chimney will prevent sparks from igniting your roof.
- Use the proper fuel (seasoned hardwood, pellets, and gas/propane) for your type of system. Never use gasoline, kerosene, or other flammable liquids to start a fire.
- Fireplaces should have a sturdy screen across the front to prevent embers from flying or logs from rolling out.
- When clearing ashes from the fireplace, be sure to put them into a metal container with a lid—never into a cardboard box or paper bag.