Kerosene heater mishap sparks house fire in James City County

Photo: James City County Fire Department

JAMES CITY COUNTY, Va. (WAVY) — A kerosene heater sparked a house fire in the Meadows subdivision Wednesday evening.

At about 6:45 p.m., dispatchers got a call from a resident who tried to move the kerosene heater as it was operating. In the process, furniture was ignited. The residents and their pets got out of the home to escape the flames. Fire units responded and quickly extinguished the fire, but not before the blaze caused an estimated $20,000 in damage, including extensive smoke damage.

The residents were displaced and are staying with friends. No one was injured.

The fire was determined to be accidental.

According to the National Fire Protection Association, supplemental heating equipment — like kerosene heaters — are the leading cause of house fires during December, January and February. Never try to move a lighted kerosene heater. Extinguish the flame and allow the heater to cool before moving.