One killed in fire

Au­thor­i­ties in­ves­ti­gate in North Beach; sec­ond blaze in­jures two

The Calvert Recorder - - Front Page - By DANDAN ZOU dzou@somd­

A house fire Thurs­day evening killed a man in North Beach and caused tens of thou­sands of dol­lars in dam­age. The cause of the fire is un­clear as of Fri­day morn­ing, ac­cord­ing to the Mary­land State Fire Mar­shal’s Of­fice.

The North Beach Vol­un­teer Fire De­part­ment later re­sponded to an­other house fire in Ch­e­sa­peake Beach two hours af­ter the first one in North Beach. Though there were in­juries, there were no fa­tal­i­ties re­ported in the sec­ond fire.

About 45 fire­fight­ers from the North Beach Vol­un­teer Fire De­part­ment and sur­round­ing de­part­ments re­sponded to a one-story, sin­gle-fam­ily home in the 8900 block of Erie Av­enue around 6:05 p.m. Nov. 1 af­ter a passerby dis­cov­ered the fire. It took the fire­fight­ers about 15 min­utes to get the fire un­der con­trol.

Af­ter the fire was ex­tin­guished, first re­spon­ders found a de­ceased adult man in a bed­room, ac­cord­ing to a Fri­day re­lease from the fire mar­shal and the North Beach fire de­part­ment. The vic­tim was trans­ported to the med­i­cal ex­am­iner’s of­fice in Bal­ti­more for an au­topsy.

The man’s name is not be­ing re­leased as of Fri­day morn­ing pend­ing iden­ti­fi­ca­tion and no­ti­fi­ca­tion. The fire mar­shal said the house was a rental, and two men were liv­ing there. The Red Cross is as­sist­ing the other oc­cu­pant of the house.

Steve Stan­ton, deputy chief of the North Beach fire de­part­ment and one of the fire­fight­ers who re­sponded to the fire, said the sec­ond oc­cu­pant was present when fire­fight­ers were fight­ing the fire and did not have any in­juries.

Stan­ton said the ra­di­ant heat of the house caused the sid­ing of a neigh­bor­ing house to be­gin to catch fire and fire­fight­ers sup­pressed

the fire and heat quickly.

The fire re­port­edly started in the kitchen or the util­ity room, but the fire mar­shal said it is un­clear what caused it. What is also un­clear is if the smoke alarms in the house were work­ing at the time. The fire

caused an es­ti­mated dam­age of $85,000 to the struc­ture and the con­tents of the house, which is owned by Reba and Richard Childs.

While as­sist­ing the fire mar­shal and clean­ing up equip­ment from the first fire, North Beach fire de­part­ment re­ceived an­other call around 8:14 p.m. for a sec­ond fire.

Fire­fight­ers re­sponded to a house on C Street for a re­ported kitchen fire. Af­ter ar­riv­ing, they saw heavy smoke from the dwelling, and found the fire had ex­tended from the kitchen to an ad­ja­cent room.

Two burned vic­tims were treated at the scene and were trans­ported to the Burn Cen­ter at MedS­tar Wash­ing­ton Hos­pi­tal Cen­ter via a Mary­land State Po­lice mede­vac.

Stan­ton said a man and a woman had moder­ate in­hala­tion in­juries, which they likely sus­tained when they tried to fight the fire them­selves.

The cause of the fire ap­peared to be the food that was cooked, which caused the grease to over­flow and heat up, ac­cord­ing to Stan­ton. The grease was ig­nited, be­came an open flame and caused nearby items in the kitchen to catch fire.

“Be care­ful when you are cook­ing with grease in your house­hold,” Stan­ton said. “It will boil over and spread, and it is sub­ject to an open fire, which is hard to con­trol.”

In ad­di­tion to hav­ing work­ing alarms, Stan­ton re­minds res­i­dents to have a work­ing fire ex­tin­guisher read­ily ac­ces­si­ble to put out kitchen fires.

The fire de­part­ment also asks res­i­dents to test their smoke alarms weekly and re­mem­ber to change their alarm bat­ter­ies when they ad­just their clocks for Day­light Sav­ing Time twice a year.


Af­ter­math of a deadly fire Nov. 1 in North Beach.


Au­thor­i­ties say a house fire Thurs­day evening killed a man in North Beach and caused tens of thou­sands of dol­lars in dam­age.

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