House Fire Deals Second Blow To Hurricane Victims

Just three weeks after Hurricane Irene hit their neighborhood hard, a New Bern homeowner is facing a damaging house fire.

The New Bern Fire-Rescue Department was called to 1748 Washington St. around 11:30 a.m. Monday, according to city spokeswoman Colleen Roberts. She says the southern end of the home was fully engulfed in flames.

Crews were able to get the fire under control in ten minutes, and it was fully extinguished within 20 minutes. Roberts says two rooms suffered extensive damage, while the rest of the house has smoke damage.

A person was home when the fire started, and he alerted authorities when he started smelling smoke. He told firefighters that the engulfed area was used as a home office, according to Roberts.

Crews identified the cause as an electrical short in a fan that was on a sofa.

Damages to the home total about $80,000.

The home is in a neighborhood that flooded during Hurricane Irene, and the clean up efforts from that storm three weeks ago are continuing. Roberts says Washington St., which is northeast of the Neuse Boulevard-Simmons Street intersection, is lined with construction and wood debris.

“It’s a sad and unfortunate situation for this neighborhood and for this family,” said New Bern Fire-Rescue Chief Bobby Aster. “First, Hurricane Irene, and now they have to deal with another disaster on top of it. I’m just glad we got the fire out as quickly as we did and that no one was hurt.”


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