Charcoal Grill Cause of Jefferson Street Fire

July 20, 2011

A small charcoal grill is the cause for the Jefferson Street Fire early Monday morning. An unstable grill was placed on top of a wooden hot tub cover, catching the empty hot tub and back deck on fire. The fire quickly spread into the home, causing a total estimated $500,000 in damage to the home, the detached garage and surrounding homes.
Two occupants who were home at the time of the fire were alerted by a neighbor and escaped unharmed.
The home was equipped with working 10-year lithium smoke alarms.
The original call came around 1:40 AM, July 18.
Firefighters were called to 1521 Jefferson Street and arrived to find 20-foot flames coming from the two-story home. Firefighters fought the fire on the back deck, while other crews entered the home through the front door and aggressively fought the fire on the first floor. The fire was extinguished around 1:54 AM.
One firefighter was treated at St. Mary's Hospital for non-life threatening injuries.
Red Cross assisted the residents with immediate needs.
City of Madison Fire Department says the fire is a reminder of grill safety.
Charcoal Grill Safety Tips
•Charcoal produces carbon monoxide (CO) when burned. CO is a colorless, odorless gas that can accumulate to toxic levels in closed environments.
oNever use a grill indoors!
•Make sure charcoal has been completely extinguished before disposing of the ashes and storing the grill - ashes may reignite 48 to 72 hours after use.
•If using a fluid to start the charcoal grill, use only starter fluid intended for this purpose. It is extremely dangerous to use any other combustible liquid to start the coals.
•Never apply charcoal lighter (starter) fluid after the charcoal has been lit.
•Store starter fluid away from heat sources and out of reach from children.

Contact:
  • Bernadette Galvez, 608-261-9844