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Dryer fire causes $120,000 in damages

By Staff | Jan 5, 2015

A malfunctioning clothes dryer is the likely cause of a weekend house fire that caused an estimated $120,000 in damages to a home in Coral Lakes and took the life of the family cat.

Officials say if not for the quick-thinking of a neighbor’s child, the damages at the home at 3012 Lake Manatee Court “could have been much worse” on Sunday.

The fire was called in a 6:11 p.m. after Kevin Grassel, 12, noticed the smoke coming from the roof of the home.

“He quickly flagged down another neighbor and told him what he saw and asked him to call 911. This, and the firefighters’ quick fire attack, prevented the fire from spreading further,” a release issued by the Cape Coral Fire Department on Monday states.

“The more rapid a response, the more property and lives can be saved,” said Division Chief Ryan Lamb in the statement, which adds “and this does not just refer to the fire department. Citizens are instrumental in ensuring we learn about the potential fire as soon as possible. The sooner it is called in, the sooner we can respond, and the better the outcome. If you see something, don’t hesitate to say something.”

Arriving firefighters saw smoke coming from the eaves of the house and a car in the driveway.

With possible reports of someone in the home, “firefighters began an aggressive interior attack,” officials said.

No one was found in the home during the search, however a pet cat was discovered.

“Attempts were made to resuscitate it, but it was unresponsive,” officials said.

The fire was sourced to the laundry room and was out by 6:30 p.m.

“After inspection, the fire was determined to be unintentional, and the point of origin was found to be in and around the clothes dryer,” the release states. “The residents, who were not home at the time of the fire, reported that they had started the dryer before they left. Dryer malfunction is likely the cause of the fire. The laundry room suffered major fire damage while smoke and water damage occurred in several other rooms of the house.”

The home has been “red-tagged” as it is uninhabitable until repairs have been made, the release states.

Source: Cape Coral Fire Department