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Barbecue pit blamed in house fire near campus

Nov. 2, 2010

Matt Hellman | Lariat Photographer
A house that caught fire Sunday morning remains boarded up and inaccessible Monday at the corner of Ninth Street and Daughtrey Avenue.

By Jade Mardirosian
Staff Writer

A house fire early Sunday morning displaced three Baylor students, who were able to escape without injury.

The Waco Fire Department was dispatched to the home, located in the 1900 block of South Ninth Street, around 6:30 a.m.

The fire was unintentional and originated in the backyard, according to reports filed with the fire department. The fire burned the uncovered porch and rear two rooms. Smoke detectors alerted the students, who were asleep in the house. The majority of the damage was confined to the exterior of the house.

Fire Marshall Jerry Hawk explained that a fire pit that was not properly extinguished caused the fire.

"At this particular fire there was a wooden deck and a barbecue pit left unattended," Hawk said. "We had that catch the back of the house on fire. When you have a charcoal grill you have to put it out completely before you leave it unattended."

Hawk explained that many students become upset when the fire department discourages them from not having barbecue pits at their residences. In reality it is much safer, Hawk said, since a pit that is not properly extinguished, or left unattended, could cause a dangerous fire.