Kenbridge firefighters start year with two fires

Published 3:55 pm Thursday, January 21, 2016

Kenbridge firefighters started off the year responding to two fires.

On Friday, Jan. 1, they were called to a one-story brick rancher located at 207 E. Third Avenue for a structure fire.

“Upon arriving, the firefighters found a raging fire in the kitchen of the dwelling which had also begun to spread to other areas of the house,” Kenbridge Fire Department Chief Richard W. Harris said. “The fire was quickly contained. However, there was extensive fire damage to the kitchen area as well as extensive smoke damage to the remainder of the structure.”

The cause of the fire was a pan of grease left unattended on the stove, Harris said. The occupants of the house had left and forget the grease, he said.

The Victoria Fire Department assisted with this call, Harris said.

Then at 8:36 a.m. on Monday, Jan. 4, Kenbridge firefighters were dispatched to a two-story wood-frame structure located at 3247 K-V road between Kenbridge and Victoria to find an overheated woodstove on the first floor and a chimney fire.

“Further investigation revealed a fairly recent reconstructed chimney with a flue liner,” Harris said. “As the chimney fire had already begun to quiet down on its own we allowed the fire to burn itself out without damage to the structure.”

The fire was caused by the burning green fire wood prompting soot to accumulate in the chimney, Harris said.

“I want to emphasize that burning green wood is a very dangerous situation and had this home not had a newly reconstructed chimney it would have probably burned this house to the ground,” he said. “All wood should be well seasoned and only a small amount of green wood used along with the seasoned wood to prevent these type fires.”

Harris added that chimneys can be cleaned properly and all soot removed by a professional chimney cleaner, but several weeks of burning green fire wood is long enough for enough resin to accumulate and start a fire.