The cause of the house fire reported Sunday evening on Graham Drive is still unknown and under investigation, but looks to be electric in nature, according to a Beavercreek Police Department’s Deputy Chief.
The power was off in the house by the time crews arrived, but was restored only about 30 minutes before the fire occurred.
A local Beavercreek man was going around with his son last week checking on people in the area where there was more damage and that’s when they met the owner of the house that caught fire.
Robert Lee has been checking on the man mostly every day since he has been without water and power.
“Today we were having a really big cookout that he was invited to, that he planned on coming to, so I came down here to pick him up and bring him back to that,” he said. “I was knocking on his door, he didn’t answer and there was an electric smell. I got just a little bit worried, I didn’t know if it was normal from what happened after the tornado or not.”
As Lee and others were calling 911 about the fire, smoke started pouring out of the eaves of the house.
“I just want to encourage everybody if you feel like there’s somebody you need to check on, even though it’s been some time since the tornadoes, there’s still not fully restored power and as that power comes back up, things like this can happen. So if you feel like you need to check on somebody, still check on them,” he said. “Luckily he wasn’t at home when it happened but sometimes they’re gonna be home. If they don’t have the breakers off things like this can happen.”
When it comes to protecting yourself from electrical house fires, especially with power being restored, Fire Marshall Randy Grogean says along with shutting off appliances, “shut off the main breaker to your house, the main disconnect to your house, shut it off while DP&L and other companies are resupplying power back to the grid that way once they have power back into the neighborhood and your house then you can check it,” he said. “If you have damage to your house, have an electrician check it before you re-energize the house. If you don’t think there’s any damage, just be very cautious of turning your power back on.”
Even though power is being restored, police crews aren’t sure when companies turn it back on.
“We don’t know right now that they’re turning on individuals streets or neighborhoods and the way the power grid is set up it’s very difficult for us,” Grogean said. “They’re working 24-hours a day to get this stuff back up and running, so again, they’re trying to communicate with us, they’re trying to do some communication to the residents as they see them about their power. The best thing to do is if you get a notification that it is, have everything off and check. If you see that the meter on the house is lit up, then you know there’s power at least to the meter and probably to your house itself.”
A fire was reported Sunday evening in the 3900 block of Graham Drive at a one-story house.
Initial reports indicate a search was underway.
When crews arrived, they took an offensive strategy to the working fire reported around 5 p.m.
We are working to learn more.
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