Wednesday, December 6, 2017

A plugged-in laptop charging on a couch was the cause of a fire Tuesday afternoon in the Lakeshore Apartments on Whitney Avenue in Hamden, CT

The Fire Marshal has determined the probable origin of this afternoon's apartment fire is an unattended laptop left charging on the couch. Unknown if the cause is poor ventilation or equipment failure.

HAMDEN, CT — A plugged-in laptop charging on a couch was the cause of a fire Tuesday afternoon in a Whitney Avenue apartment, fire officials said.

The Hamden Fire Department responded to the Lakeshore Apartments on the corner of Whitney Avenue and Davis Street just after 2 p.m.

A neighbor called 911 to report smoke coming from the building and flames seen from the rear of the home, according to a release from the Hamden Fire Department.

Engine 3 arrived on scene and crews forced entry to the locked apartment and the unit directly next door and found that no one was home in either apartment. The fire was located in a rear-facing living room and quickly knocked down, according to the release.

Additional crews checked to make sure the fire hadn’t spread.

The fire was contained to the living room, which was determined to be the room of origin, fire officials said. Smoke and heat damage traveled throughout the affected apartment.

Fire Marshal Brian Dolan determined that a laptop, parts of which could still be seen after firefighters extinguished the blaze, was the cause of the fire. The computer had been plugged in and was charging on the couch, officials said.

The residents of the unit, two adults and an infant, were relocated by the American Red Cross.

“Due to the quick action of the neighbor reporting the emergency and extinguishment of the fire, no other units have displaced residents,” Deputy Fire Chief Gary Merwede said in the release. “Property managers were on scene to assess damage before the final units cleared the scene.”

Fire officials remind residents that accessories that require charging should not be left unattended or placed on surfaces that may inhibit ventilation.

“At this time, it is undetermined if the unit overheated or there was a failure of electrical or battery components,” Merwede said.

There were no injuries reported.