Wednesday, December 6
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Space Heater Likely Cause Of Fatal House Fire

ASHEBORO NC – Officials have released the name of the victim of a fatal house fire in Denton on Thursday.

According to a statement from the Randolph County Sheriff’s office fire crews from Randolph and Davidson counties were called to a report of a house fire at 7026 Canaan Church Rd., in Denton. Initial reports from 911 calls indicated someone was possibly still inside the house. Fire crews arrived to find the home heavily involved with fire. While working to put out the fire, firefighters found the body of a male in the living room of the home.

investigators with the Randolph County Fire Marshal’s Office determined that the fire was accidental and caused by an electric space heater. Jonathan Hogue, 29, was pronounced deceased at the scene by the Randolph County Medical Examiner.

According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), heating equipment is the second-leading cause of U.S. home fires and the third-leading cause of home fire deaths. Space heaters account for 43 percent of U.S. home heating fires and 85 percent of associated deaths. “Make sure children and pets are kept well away from space heaters at all times, and remember that space heaters should never be left unattended,” said Carli. “When you’re ready to go to sleep, it’s time to turn off your space heater,” said Lorraine Carli, vice president of NFPA’s Outreach and Advocacy division. The NFPA also provided the following safety tips for safely operating a space heater in your home this winter:

• Purchase a heater with the seal of a qualified testing laboratory.
• Choose a heater with a thermostat and overheat protection.
• Place the heater on a solid, flat surface.
• Make sure your heater has an auto shut-off to turn the heater off if it tips over.
• Keep space heaters out of the way of foot traffic. Never block an exit.
• Keep children away from the space heater.
• Plug the heater directly into the wall outlet. Never use an extension cord.
• Space heaters should be turned off and unplugged when you leave the room or go to bed

Additionally, fire experts advise making sure your smoke and CO detectors are working before using any kind of indoor heating this winter.