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House catches fire from boy playingwith candle

January 03, 1998

House catches fire from boy playing with candle

By JULIE E. GREENE

Staff Writer

A child playing with fire led to a house fire Saturday afternoon at 980 Mount Aetna Road, a fire official said.

The unidentified boy set a toy on fire with a candle before an adult put the fire out and set the toy on the porch next to trash bags, said Battalion Chief Ronald Horn with the Hagerstown Fire Department.

"She apparently didn't have it out," Horn said.

The state fire marshal could not be reached for comment.

Three adults and two children escaped the house unhurt shortly after 3:30 p.m., officials said.

Most of the fire was on the porch of the one-story white house when firefighters arrived, said Lt. Jonathan Gift with the Funkstown Volunteer Fire Co. Inc.

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"It traveled very quickly through the rest of the house. It took off pretty fast," Gift said.

About 30 firefighters had the fire out in 20 minutes, he said.

Family members, who would not identify themselves, said they would spend the night at another family member's home.

Some neighbors said they heard explosions.

"It sounded like two explosions. We thought it was a bad car accident or something until we came out of our house and saw all the black smoke," said neighbor Janet Schlotterbeck.

Gift said the explosions were probably aerosol cans.

Also responding were Community Rescue Service, Washington County Emergency Air Unit, Washington County Emergency Rehab Unit and Hagerstown and Washington County fire police.

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