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Electrical fire at duplex leaves 7 displaced

One treated for smoke inhalation after electrical fire torches couch, wall
Couch fire damage
Posted at 10:23 PM, Feb 29, 2024
and last updated 2024-02-29 23:23:54-05

GREEN BAY (NBC26) — An electrical fire left seven people in a duplex temporarily without a home.

  • A fire damaged a couch and wall in a living room in the Tank neighborhood late Thursday morning
  • Green Bay Metro Fire reported the origin of the fire to be electrical
  • The fire department originally reported three people were displaced, but the family in the upstairs unit told NBC 26 on Thursday that they also had to leave temporarily because the heating system was not functioning
  • Video shows damage from the fire

(The following is a transcription of the full broadcast story)

We're in Green Bay, where a fire destroyed a couch and part of a wall at this duplex. The electrical fire is leaving seven people without a home temporarily.

The fire broke out unexpectedly late Thursday morning.

It spread from these electrical cords to this couch and blew out a window.

"That thing came in with smoke and flames showing, and actually people coming out of windows and doors," Battalion Chief David Kolz said, "and by the time [Green Bay Metro Fire] got there, they had self-evacuated, which was great."

Dianna Chandara and her boyfriend live here but did not want to speak on camera — Dianna tells me she scrambled outside.

The upstairs neighbors were forced to leave their dog inside briefly, and one person was treated for smoke inhalation.

Battalion Chief Kolz says electrical fires like this can happen suddenly.

"Sometimes those things do fail, so it's always important to keep them monitored [and] keep surge protectors on them.

The fire department gives these tips to avoid having this problem:

  • Check cords for frayed wiring or broken plugs
  • Don't pinch cords against walls or furniture or run them under carpets or across doorways
  • Remember that cords are not to be bundled up when plugged in because they can overheat
  • Extension cords are for temporary use only

They also say to replace old outlets and keep heaters away from anything that can burn.
"It does happen, and as long as you're not using overloaded extension cords and overloaded surge protectors, you should be safe," Kolz said.

Dianna and her boyfriend and the other person living on the lower level were already relocated with the help of the Red Cross, but now the neighbors living upstairs tell us their furnace isn't working, and they will also have to be relocated, at least temporarily.