(credit: KTVT/KTXA)

(credit: KTVT/KTXA)

ARLINGTON (CBSDFW.COM) – It started with a fire at one Arlington home, but lead to another house going up in flames and the partial evacuation of a residential area.

A fire at a house in the 6100 block of Kelly Elliott raged to three- alarms.  Firefighters responded quickly but were unable to contain the flames before they spread and caused another house to begin burning.

As a precaution first responders evacuated several houses on either side of the two that caught fire. Many of those ordered to leave their homes went to local churches to get out of the cold.

Though firefighters weren’t called to the first house until just before 10 a.m., investigators now believe a fire in a homeowner’s fireplace last night may have sparked the initial blaze. “He said had fire going in fireplace last night…continued over to this morning,” explained Arlington Fire Department Public Information Officer Lt. Kevin Seeton. “Somehow [the fire] got into attic space.” Seeton said the homeowner was very fortunate to get out of the house unharmed.

Lauren Layton said her neighbor told her, “He was in back of the house and he went out and saw leaves on fire…tried to get water hose but that was not hooked up. He ran in and got the dog.”

Firefighters were able to get the fires under control within 20 minutes, but not before one home was destroyed. The homeowner’s daughter said her father lives alone with his pets. He was taken to a local hospital to be treated for smoke inhalation but is expected to fully recover.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has some suggestions during the winter months –

  • Remember space heaters need space – keep clothes, drapes and anything else at least three feet away
  • Don’t overload extension cords
  • Never leave a fire in the fireplace unattended
  • Have your chimney cleaned regularly
  • Make sure your smoke detectors have fresh batteries

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