Unattended Candle Determined to Be Cause of East Side Basement Fire

  • Location

    500 block Ludington Avenue
    Madison, WI 53704
  • Incident Date

    Dispatch: Jul. 5, 2024 - 7:53am
    Arrival: Jul. 5, 2024 - 7:58am
  • Incident Type


43.0922264, -89.33979

This map displays an approximate location.

Incident Details

The Madison Fire Department responded to the 500 block of Ludington Avenue for a reported basement fire. Two people were in the home at the time and were alerted to the problem when a smoke alarm went off. Both occupants were able to evacuate safely with one of their cats. 

As crews approached Ludington Avenue, they noted smoke from several blocks away, prompting the addition of another fire engine and ambulance to the call. Command Car 31 arrived first on scene to find heavy smoke showing from the outside on the first and second floors. Occupants met MFD outside and reported there was still another cat in the house. Firefighters were able to rescue the second cat right away, unharmed. 

Engine Co. 8 was assigned to fire attack. Upon entering the home, they quickly encountered high heat and no visibility due to the amount of smoke. The decision was made to exit the home and attack the fire from the outside. Crews broke the basement windows and sprayed water into the basement. Once the fire was knocked down well enough to improve conditions inside the home, firefighter re-entered the house to fully extinguish the fire. Though fire was contained to the basement, there is extensive smoke damage throughout the house. 

Fire investigators confirm the fire was unintentional and the result of an unattended candle in the basement. Three people and two cats are displaced. No injuries were reported.

Front of house with several firefighters outside
Firefighter stands of roof of house with smoke coming out of roof and windows
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