Space heater blamed for East Topeka fire Wednesday that sends 2 to hospital

Topeka Fire Department officials said the blaze was reported shortly before 3 a.m. at a residence at 521 S.E. Leland. (Google Maps)

An early-morning fire that caused an estimated $2,000 damage early Wednesday in East Topeka was being blamed on a space heater.

 

Topeka Fire Department officials said the blaze was reported shortly before 3 a.m. at a residence at 521 S.E. Leland.

First-arriving crews found light smoke coming from the back of the two- story, wooden-framed house.

Two occupants of the house made it outside safely on their own, but sustained smoke inhalation. They were treated at the scene, then were transported by American Medical Response ambulance to a local hospital for observation. Their injuries weren’t considered to be life threatening.

Officials said firefighters began an aggressive attack on the structure, completed a primary and secondary search for any other occupants and extinguished a small fire in a bedroom.

A Topeka Fire Department investigator responded to the scene. The preliminary investigation indicated the fire was accidental and more than likely was associated with the malfunction of a portable heater.

Of the estimated $2,000 loss, $1,500 to the structure, and the other $500 to its contents.

Fire officials said no working smoke detectors were found inside the residence.

Also responding to the scene were the Topeka Police Department, Kansas Gas Service and Westar Energy.

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