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Fire damages Brooks Lane home

AFD: Make sure to take safety measures with space heaters

A fire heavily damaged a Brooks Lane residents on Christmas Eve, according to officials.

Atmore Capt. Jeremy Blackmon said the AFD received the call at 3:11 p.m. and arrived on scene 2 minutes later, where they saw flames coming from the front bedroom.

Blackmon said once the AFD got everything established and began its external attack at first, the fire spread across the front porch and front living room.

“It was a very good knockdown,” Blackmon said. “Our guys did a great job with it. They had it knocked down 15-20 minutes after it started. After that, we just had a mop up.”

Blackmon said the fire damage equated to a partial to a total loss for insurance purposes.

Blackmon said the fire extended into the attic, and the AFD had to cut a hole in the ceiling of the living room to get access. He said they used a chainsaw to gain access.

According to a preliminary assessment, a space heater caught the fabric of a chair on fire, Blackmon said about the cause.

“For insurance purposes, I’d say it was a partial to a total loss,” he said. “It’s classifying as unintentional and incidental.”

Blackmon said this was the first space heater fire of the season.

“If they’re going to use a space heater, make sure they’ve got a 3-foot distance all thee way around them, from curtains, bed sheets, etc.,” he said. “And to make sure they have the tip hazard protection. This protection occurs when they tip over, they cut off.

“No. 3, when you leave the home, turn your space heaters off,” he said, adding that the residents in the Brooks Lane home left their space heater on after leaving.

Additionally, Blackmon said space heaters need to be plugged into the wall directly, and never be plugged in via extension chord.

The Poarch Creek Indians Fire and Police Departments, and the Atmore Police Department also responded to the fire on Brooks Lane.