Residents Warming Pipes Ignite House Fires

Residents trying to keep their homes warm caused the houses to go up in flames, according to investigators.

The Delaware State Fire Marshal's Office says fires at two Kent County homes started when residents tried to warm water pipes.

Officials say one fire started Tuesday morning at a home on Boyd Drive in Magnolia when combustibles under the house ignited as the owner used a hand-held heating device to thaw frozen water pipes. Damage was estimated at $25,000. The homeowner was not injured.

On Monday night, firefighters were called to a fire at mobile home on Stardust Drive in Cheswold. Investigators determined that a kerosene heater placed under the home to prevent freezing ignited combustibles. Damage is estimated at $7,500.

Officials warn that people should use extreme caution when using any heating device to thaw frozen water pipes.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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