Fireplace Ashes Spark Fairfax House Fire

On Sunday, December 18, at approximately 4:28 p.m., units from Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department and the City of Fairfax Fire Department were dispatched for a reports of a house fire in the 5200 block of Concordia Street in the Fairfax area of Fairfax County.

Fire Station 32, Fairview, arrived first on scene and reported light smoke showing from the garage of a two-story single family home. Crews worked to extinguish the fire. They were able to bring the fire under control within eleven minutes of being dispatched to the scene.

The homeowner returned home and discovered the fire upon entering the house and called 911. A smoke alarm was present and had activated. Two adults and one child were displaced as a result of the fire. Red Cross assistance was offered and declined.

Fire Investigators determined the fire originated in a family room and was accidental in nature. The fire was caused by improperly disposed fire place ashes. The property damage is estimated at $60,000.00.

Winter Safety TipsThe Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department would like to remind all residents to be cautious and keep safety in mind when handling fire place ashes. Following a few simple safety tips can help keep you and your loved ones safe.

  • Do not discard your ashes into any combustible container such as a paper or plastic bag, a cardboard box, or a plastic trash can.
  • Do not place ash containers on decks, porches, or in garages.
  • Put ashes into a non-combustible metal container with a lid.
  • Pour water into the container to make sure the ashes are cool.
  • Keep your can OUTSIDE the home, away from your fireplace or stove and anything combustible.
  • Teach all family members to be safe with ashes from your fireplace or wood stove.