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It took firefighters from four stations about 30 minutes to put out this fire on Robin Road Southwest, but firefighters remained on the scene, putting out hot spots, until nearly midnight, according to Battalion Chief Darwin Clark.
Daily photo by Seth Burkett
It took firefighters from four stations about 30 minutes to put out this fire on Robin Road Southwest, but firefighters remained on the scene, putting out hot spots, until nearly midnight, according to Battalion Chief Darwin Clark.

Firefighters called out twice to same home

By Seth Burkett
sburkett@decaturdaily.com · 340-2355

A house burned down Friday night when a fire in a chimney rekindled after firefighters had put it out, Decatur’s fire marshal said.

Battalion Chief Darwin Clark said firefighters responded to a small fire in a chimney attached to a wood-burning stove shortly after 6 p.m. at 316 Robin Road S.W.

“We put that fire out. We did a thorough check of the chimney before we left. Evidently, there was a defective place in the flue somewhere, and the fire rekindled after we left and spread to the attic,” Clark said.

At about 9:15 p.m. firefighters answered another call to the house. The second blaze was devastating.

“Basically, the whole attic was destroyed, and of course, it’s all going to drop down in the house when that happens,” Clark said.

Larry McDaniel, 36, watched flames devour the home he grew up in. The home belonged to his mother, Rose McDaniel, he said.

The fire displaced his mother and four other family members, he said.

“At least everyone got out,” he said.

Clark said it took firefighters from four stations about 30 minutes to put the fire out, but firefighters remained on the scene, putting out hot spots, until nearly midnight.

Ordinarily, a flue should not allow the fire to spread, Clark said.

Rose McDaniel told Clark she recently had her chimney checked, but “the system was installed over 30 years ago. There must have been a defect in it somewhere that allowed the fire to get into the attic,” Clark said.

The fire department will investigate the system further, he said. Wood-burning stoves and fireplaces are a less common heat source than they once were, Clark said, but those who use them should bear in mind that they can be a fire hazard. Have them inspected annually by professionals, he said.

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