Tullahoma Structure Fire.jpg

A firefighter makes his way into the house as heavy smoke billows from the front door. No one was injured or home during the fire.

The Tullahoma Fire Department responded to a structure fire Monday morning on West Grundy Street, according to Tullahoma Fire Chief Richard Shasteen.

“Upon our arrival we found heavy smoke coming out of the structure,” Shasteen said. “We were able to ac­cess the structure quickly and put the fire out.”

There were no injuries and no one was home during the fire. Shas­teen said the cause of the fire was a wall heater in the hallway that kicked on when temperature changed in the morning. The heater was surround­ed by various items.

“The person that lived there had some stuff in front of the wall heater and didn’t realize the heater was go­ing to come on, so it was an acciden­tal fire from a wall heater in the hall­way,” Shasteen said.

The house had significant smoke and structural damage forcing the resident to relocate.

Shasteen pointed out this was the first fire caused by a heater this sea­son. A similar situation happened in Manchester the next day where a fire was caused by a wall heater turning on as the temperature changed.

Shasteen advised caution to resi­dents about checking their heating units as the temperatures change.

“Even though you think you got those heaters turned all the way down, they are not really off, it’s just low,” Shasteen stated. “So, when that room drops down to 45 to 50 degrees, the heater is going to come on and it comes on full blast.”

Shasteen said the department reminds everyone to have extension cords, space heaters, wall heaters and central heating air units checked and serviced as fires caused by heat­ers are higher this time of year, with structure fires being their first.

He added if anyone has ques­tions about the heaters or they smell something, then don’t hesi­tate to call the fire department or 911 so they can send someone out there.

“It’s free and doesn’t cost you anything, and we’ll come check it to make sure it’s operating safely,” Shasteen said. “There is no charge for the fire department to come out so we would rather you be safe than sorry.”