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Sunday, January 9, 2011

Upper Marlboro Townhouse Fire

MEDIA CONTACT: Mark E. Brady, Chief Spokesperson, 240-508-7930, mebrady@co.pg.md.us

Prince George’s County Firefighters battled a fire in Upper Marlboro this evening causing significant damage to two townhouses. Just after 5:30 pm, Sunday, January 09, 2011, firefighters were summoned to the 13900 block of King George Way for a report of a fire in a townhouse. Fire units from Upper Marlboro Fire/EMS Station #820 were the first to arrive and advised of fire showing. The blaze apparently started as the family was using their fireplace on the first floor. A malfunction allowed the fire to extend from the firebox/flu into the interior walls and extended up the void spaces into the attic.

Firefighters stretched their hoselines into the structure to attack the fire and ensured occupants were out of the burning structure and the attached townhouses. With a stiff wind assisting the rapid extension, the fire spread quickly into the adjoining townhouse. A “second alarm” was sounded bringing additional firefighters and resources to the scene.

A total of 55 firefighter/medics worked aggressively for 30 minutes to knock the fire down. All of the occupants had escaped safely and there are no reports of firefighter or civilian injuries. The fire appears to be “accidental” and attributed to a malfunctioning fireplace. Fire loss is estimated at $200,000.

It appears that occupants of four townhomes will be displaced. They are being assisted by the Department’s Citizen Services Unit and the American Red Cross with temporary arrangements.

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