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The Danville Fire Department was dispatched this morning at 4:49 am to a possible structure fire on Elizabeth Street. The first arriving engine found heavy smoke and visible fire coming from 28 Elizabeth Street. Engine 4 confirmed both occupants were out of the house. Fire could be seen inside and outside of the house. Firefighters attacked the fire from inside the house. DFD personnel searched the inside of the house and verified no one was inside the house. The fire had burned a hole through the floor into the crawlspace. Fire was found inside a wall and had also extended into the attic. Finding hotspots and small fires took additional time to extinguish. Damage to the house was significant. The house is not habitable without extensive repairs.
The occupants were extremely fortunate that they were alerted to the fire. A passerby saw the house was on fire. He beat on the door until both occupants woke up and exited the structure. The passerby then left the scene. The Fire Marshal's Office investigated the fire. The cause was a faulty fireplace. The fireplace had separated from the wall allowing heat and fire to escape the fireplace and chimney. The fire caught the interior of the wall on fire. It then extended to the attic and also burned down into the crawlspace. There were no working smoke alarms in the house.
Three engines, one ladder truck, and two support vehicles initially responded to the call. A fourth engine was later dispatched as well as the Fire Marshal. 20 DFD personnel were on scene for 3 1/2 hours. The occupants are receiving assistance from the Danville chapter of the Red Cross. The DFD reminds everyone that working smoke alarms should be in every residence. If you live in the City and need smoke alarms, please call the DFD at (434) 799-5226 between 8:00 am and 5:00 pm. We will send someone to evaluate your residence for smoke alarms and install the appropriate amount of alarms. There is no charge for this service.