An accidental fire Wednesday at a vacant townhouse in West Springfield has caused around $100,000 in damage, according to a news release from the Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department.
Firefighters responded to a fire at 8733 Sheridan Farms Ct., at approximately 6:50 a.m. and found heavy smoke and fire coming from the rear and roof of the unfurnished, three-story townhouse.
It took firefighters 15 minutes to get the fire under control.
The release states the fire was caused by an electrical wiring anomaly in the attic. There were no civilian or fire personnel injuries.
The fire department offers the following tips to help residents lower the risk of electrical fires:
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.