Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department
News Release 10-37
Date: March 18, 2010
Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department units responded to a garden apartment fire, Wednesday, March 17, 2010, at approximately 2:10 p.m. in the Lincolnia area of Fairfax County. The three-story garden apartment is located at 4811 Manitoba Drive.
Firefighters encountered heavy smoke coming from the roof and vents upon arrival. Firefighters discovered fire in the walls and attic space in two apartments between the second and third floors of the building. Firefighters pulled drywall away to locate the fire within the apartment walls. The fire was extinguished in approximately 45 minutes. One occupant was treated at the scene, but not transported. Electrical service to the apartment building was shut down, displacing 20 residents. The building management is providing temporary housing for the displaced.
Damage is estimated at $150,000.
According to fire investigators, the fire was accidental. An electrical anomaly involving a bathroom light fixture 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.
Duty PIO (Weekends/After-hours): 703-877-3702
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.
4100 Chain Bridge Road
Fairfax, VA 22030