Hot Ashes Start House Fire In Black Forest

Fire investigators say that a fire that destroyed a home Monday afternoon was started by accident.

Firefighters rushed to a home on Milam Road near Burgess in Black Forest Monday afternoon after a neighbor spotted a thick plume of smoke coming from the property.

"The front was totally engulfed. Quite high flames, about 6 to 10 feet," Larry DiFrancesco recalled, describing the moments before firefighters arrived. "The garage had fire coming out from it. Before the fire trucks got here there was fire coming out the front of the house."

Firefighters tell us it started when the homeowner put hot ashes into a metal container. The ashes sparked a fire on nearby bushes that quickly spread to the house. Officials say the homeowner will not face any charges.

Several firefighters responded to the home, aggressively attacking the fire. Strong winds Monday were a concern for firefighters, but they were able to get the flames under control without the fire spreading beyond the property.

The house sustained significant damage and is expected to be a total loss.

Even though the ashes were put in a metal container, fire crews say the can stay hot for days or even weeks. They say it's always best to place the ashes in water first.