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Ashes from stove cause Severn house to accidentally catch fire

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Posted at 11:00 AM, Nov 08, 2017
and last updated 2017-11-08 11:00:39-05

Firefighters say a house accidentally caught fire in Severn after ashes from a pellet stove were put in a paper bag on the porch. 

Crews were sent to a house in the 1400 block of Druid Lane around 6:30 p.m. When they got to the scene, they said there were heavy fire conditions on the porch and the side of the home. 

Though they were able to extinguish the fire in 20 minutes, some firefighters had to stay overnight to watch the house and safely put out hot spots. 

The two people living in the home are not injured but are currently displaced. Damages are estimated at $200,000. 

Anne Arundel County firefighters wanted to give some tips for when you are cleaning your fireplace or a pellet stove so you can avoid a fire: 

  • It is recommended that you always place discarded fireplace ashes in a heavy metal container, moisten the ashes and cover the container with a metal lid. 
  • Never use a paper bag, a cardboard box or a plastic trash bag in the cleaning process. 
  • Never use a vacuum cleaner to pick up ashes. 
  • Ashes should be kept in a metal container outside, away from the house to cool. Your garage, house, or deck are dangerous locations for ashes to cool. 
  • After ashes have cooled in a metal container, it is necessary to find a suitable disposal site. Never dump fireplace ashes until they have had at least four days to cool. Even after four days, great care should be given in selecting a dump site. Wooded areas should always be avoided.