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SLC house fire displaces 11, causes over $150K in damage

(Salt Lake Fire Department)

Estimated read time: 3-4 minutes

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SALT LAKE CITY — Eleven people were displaced and over $150,000 worth of damage was caused in a two-alarm fire in Salt Lake City Saturday morning, officials said.

Just after 5 a.m. Saturday, Salt Lake fire officials responded to a two-alarm fire at 1331 W. Walnut Dr. in Salt Lake City, according to Jasen Asay, spokesman for Salt Lake City Fire Department. Upon reaching the location, firefighters found heavy smoke and flames coming from the house, Asay said. All 11 people who lived in the house — four adults, seven children — had evacuated the house, according to Asay.

One man was treated for first- and second-degree burns on the scene, and his wife was treated for smoke inhalation, Asay said. The two had been sleeping in an area closest to the fire, Asay said, and the man unsuccessfully attempted to extinguish it using pots full of water when he awoke.

Asay said it was fortunate the home had smoke detectors, and that they were working.

"We stress this a lot," Asay said. "At this time of year, it's starting to get colder and we're using space heaters and furnaces a lot more. You have to be careful."

Both the man and his wife were later transported to the hospital.

A neighbor, Thunder Heard, was awakened by the bright flickering and loud crackle of the nearby flames and he rushed to the home to help.

"I knew there were a lot of kids in there, a lot of people," Heard said, adding that thankfully, they had all gotten out safely.

Investigators are still working to determine the cause of the fire, but do not suspect any foul play, according to Asay. The fire appears to have originated in an add-on area of the garage, Asay said. A shed outside the home also caught on fire, and a neighboring house was damaged by the heat from the fire, according to Asay.

The house suffered significant fire damage, with total estimates ranging from $160,000 to $200,000, according to the Salt Lake City Fire Department.

All 11 family members in the residence were displaced, Asay said. Red Cross officials also responded to the scene, and were working to find temporary living accommodations for those impacted.

Friends of the family have setup a GoFundMe account* to assist their transition process following the fire.

Contributing: Wendy Leonard

* does not assure that the monies deposited to the account will be applied for the benefit of the persons named as beneficiaries. If you are considering a deposit to the account, you should consult your own advisors and otherwise proceed at your own risk.

Ben Dowsett


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