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Fireplace problems blamed for five house fires in the KC area

Updated: 2013-12-09T06:02:44Z

By TONY RIZZO

The Kansas City Star

At least five house fires in the Kansas City area over the weekend are being blamed on improperly maintained or unmonitored fireplaces.

Shawnee firefighters reported that a fire early Sunday morning in the 11900 block of West 66th Street that caused about $130,000 in damage started in a lower-level fireplace. There were no working smoke detectors, but one resident saw smoke and the residents escaped uninjured, fire officials said.

Kansas City, Kan., firefighters responded to two fires Saturday night — in the 1900 block of South 16th Street and the 1900 block of South 65th Street — that originated in chimney flues or around fireplaces, they reported. In both cases, smoke detectors alerted residents and no injuries were reported. Firefighters rescued an unconscious dog from the 16th Street fire and were able to revive it.

On Friday night, a fire at a home in the 2400 block of Stewart Avenue was blamed on an unattended fire in the fireplace. The home was being remodeled and was unoccupied at the time, the Kansas City, Kan., Fire Department reported.

Lee’s Summit firefighters reported a house fire Friday night in the 1300 block of Southwest Crossing Drive that started in a chimney flue. The occupants were able to get out of the house before firefighters arrived and were not injured.

Fire officials reminded people to have their fireplaces inspected before using them and to make sure they have working smoke alarms.

To reach Tony Rizzo, call 816-234-4435 or send email to trizzo@kcstar.com.

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