Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department
4100 Chain Bridge Rd, Fairfax, Virginia 22030
Phone: 703-246-3801, TTY: 711 and Fax:703-385-1687
Duty PIO (Weekends/After-hours): 703-280-0694
Media Information Line: 703-324-3000
News Release 09-56
Date: July 27, 2009
Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department units responded to an apartment fire at approximately 6:45 a.m., Sunday, July 26, 2009, in the Herndon area of Fairfax County. The garden apartment is located in the Town of Herndon at 146 Laurel Way.
Firefighters encountered smoke coming from the third floor of the three-story apartment building upon arrival. Firefighters quickly responded with an interior fire attack and contained the fire to the apartment of origin. Firefighters also rescued an occupant and several pets from the apartment's third floor balcony using ground ladders. A pet cat alerted the occupant to the fire. Paramedics treated the adult male at the scene and then transported him to Reston Hospital with non-life threatening injuries. The fire was brought under control in approximately 20 minutes. One adult male was displaced. Red Cross was declined by the occupant. There were no other injuries.
Damage is estimated at $200,000.
According to fire investigators, the fire was accidental. An electrical anomaly involving a pole lamp caused the fire.
Electrical Safety Tips
- Replace or repair loose or frayed cords on all electrical devices.
- Avoid overloading outlets. Plug only one high-wattage appliance into each receptacle outlet at a time.
- If your power goes out a lot or the lights in your home flicker, smell bad, or make noise, have an electrician come in to inspect your wiring.
- The electrical outlet in the bathroom should have a Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter (GFCI). This is a tool that protects you from dangerous shock when water and electricity come together. An electrician can install a GFCI for you.
- All electrical outlets and switches should be covered by “face plates.”
- When possible, avoid the use of “cube taps” and other devices that allow the connection of multiple appliances into a single receptacle.
- Inspect electrical cords to make sure they are in good condition.
- Consider having additional circuits or outlets added by a qualified electrician so you do not have to use extension cords.
- Don’t tie or knot electrical cords.
- Don’t let furniture sit on electrical cords.
- Follow the manufacturer’s instruction for plugging an appliance into a receptacle outlet.
For more information, call Daniel L. Schmidt or Captain I Randal Bittinger, Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department, 703-246-3801 and TTY: 711. Fairfax County is committed to nondiscrimination on the basis of disability in all county programs, services and activities. Reasonable accommodations will be provided upon request.