An unattended candle is the suspected cause of an early morning fire that destroyed an Airmont Road home on Christmas. However, firefighters worked to ensure the tragedy did not entirely ruin Christmas for the displaced family of eight.
Dispatchers were alerted to the fire by a 911 call at 2:40 a.m. Dec. 25. Crews from Round Hill, Philomont, Purcellville, Hamilton, and Leesburg initially responded to the scene. A second alarm brought more resources from Middleburg, Loudoun Heights, Clarke County and Frederick County.
Firefighters fought the blaze from outside and inside the home, but were unable to save the structure, which was ruled a total loss.
Although the home’s smoke alarms were not in working condition, the residents had safely evacuated prior to the firefighters’ arrival.
One firefighter was transported to a local area hospital for evaluation.
Three adults, five children and a dog were displaced by the fire. The family was assisted on the scene by American Red Cross and is staying with family members.
Firefighters from Round Hill, Purcellville and surrounding stations worked to get donated toys delivered to the children on Christmas morning.
The Fire Marshal’s Office issued two reminders as a result of the fire.
The agency recommends candles be placed on a sturdy, nonflammable surface, away from children, pets and anything that can burn. Candles require constant supervision by an adult and you must ensure that candles are completely extinguished before leaving the area. A safer alternative is using flameless candles that still look and smell like real candles.
Also, if your smoke alarms aren’t working, are over 10 years old or you have questions about your smoke alarms, Loudoun County Fire and Rescue can help. Its Smoke Alarm Program offers home safety inspections and smoke alarms to county residents at no charge.