Duplex fire displaces 10 people

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, August 6, 2002

A smoldering candlewick was the cause of 10 people being burned out of their homes Friday evening.

Suffolk Fire Captain Jim Judkins said the fire was reported at 4:48 p.m. and when firefighters arrived on the scene the duplex located in the 800 Block of Second Avenue fire had engulfed the porch of the two-story, brick veneer structure.

Judkins said firefighters quickly knocked down the blaze, however the intense heat and flames had penetrated the living area of the duplex and flames had burned through to the attic.

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Even though the fire was brought quickly under control, both sections of the duplex were heavily damaged; the upstairs with heat and smoke and downstairs with smoke and water damage.

The Suffolk Chapter of the American Red Cross was at the scene of the fire and is providing services to them.

Judkins said fire investigators determined that a candle in a wastebasket was the point of origin for the fire.

&uot;The adult resident in the upstairs apartment advised us that a child had been playing with candles and being a good mother, she took the candles from the child and discarded them in the trash,&uot; said the captain. &uot;She thought they were out when she threw them in the trash, but apparently they weren’t completely out. Fortunately none of the occupants of the duplex was injured as a result of the fire.&uot;

Judkins said a damage estimate on the structure was not available, but that firefighters arrived and contained the fire quickly enough to save the building.