Location of pre-Christmas Kennewick fire (Google street view)
Location of pre-Christmas Kennewick fire (Google street view)

A fire that badly damaged a Kennewick home last Wednesday was triggered by a strange cause, say fire officials.

  Fire investigators report what started the fire that displaced family

Wednesday, December 21st around 7:50 AM Kennewick Fire crews were dispatched to a two-story residence at 5220 South Auburn Place and found an upstairs bedroom was on fire, with flames coming out of a window. Crews immediately began sending a plume of water into the window to knock down the blaze.

According to Kennewick Fire Chief Chad Michael, the occupant of the bedroom, a young man, had closed the door before fleeing the house, which helped prevent the spread of the blaze.

Kennewick Fire crews had the fire out within about 20 minutes and were able to prevent the fire itself from damaging other rooms. However, an extensive amount of water began to pool in areas of the first floor from the firefighting efforts.

  Fire crews protected Christmas presents with tarps and were able to remove them.

Fire crews were able to spread tarps on the first floor to minimize water damage, this is a common practice when they are able. They also removed the family's Christmas presents before they were soaked by the water pooling up in areas. Fortunately, the family of 4 was able to exit the home, KFD says they will be temporarily displaced until repairs can be made.

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Michael says the fire was apparently triggered by the young man who was using a lighter to melt spray foam insulation. Michael said in a news release:

"It was not clear as to what exactly he was working on when this occurred."

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