A heat lamp turned on for a family's cats on a porch led to a house fire in Auburn on Saturday, Nov. 16, when it ignited combustible materials in close proximity.
No one or no animals were harmed, but the two adults living in the home were displaced.
According to a Barrow County Emergency Services news release, around 9:15 p.m. Saturday, firefighters arrived in the 1400 block of Carl-Bethlehem Road and found the house on fire.
Crews were able to knock back the flames enough to make entry into the residence. Once inside, they quickly extinguished the rest of the fire. The homeowners had exited the structure, but a quick search by a search team discovered the family’s dog hiding under a bed. The dog was quickly removed from the home and reunited with its family unharmed.
The home suffered heavy fire, smoke and water damage, but the bulk of the fire was stopped before the majority of the home’s structure and roof were burned.
“This home is what we refer to as ‘legacy construction,' Lt. Steve Rose, public information officer for BCES, said. "That means that the house was built many years ago, and the techniques and materials used back then are better able to withstand prolonged exposure to fire. The homeowners told us the house was constructed over 50 years ago, with some of the lumber actually coming from trees harvested off of the property.
"Back then homes were stick-built using dimensional lumber. More modern homes use combinations of newer materials like laminated lumber of smaller dimensions and pre-made trusses that burn much quicker, and aren’t able to withstand exposure to fire for extended amounts of time.”
The displaced adults are being assisted by the American Red Cross.