DATE/TIME: 122199/1530PST
RELEASE: 99-195


Fire caused heavy damage to a Northwest Las Vegas home late Tuesday morning. An adult and two teens were in the house when it caught fire; they were able to escape without injury. The cause of the fire is under investigation; it appears it started in a bedroom in the front of the house, a room that was converted from a garage. The American Red Cross is assisting the family of three adults, one teen and an infant with temporary housing and belongings.
Firefighters responded to 1721 MALLARD STREET (Vegas & Jones) at 10:15AM, this morning. When they arrived on the scene, heavy flames and smoke were coming out of the 1-story wood frame house. It took firefighters approximately 15 minutes to bring the fire under control, which destroyed a bedroom, caused heavy fire damage to the kitchen and smoke damage to the rest of the house. Damage was estimated at $70,000.
The occupant, Bill Hanson, 35, told Fire Investigators that he was taking a shower in a bathroom on the other side of the house. He said his 13-year-old niece, who was also at home at the time, screamed his bedroom was on fire. When Hanson got back to his room, he said there were heavy flames on the floor and ceiling. He told Investigators that he had several candles burning in the room when he left to take the shower. He also said there was a space heater in that room. Fire Investigators are still looking into what exactly cause the fire; it is listed as undetermined-under investigation. At first, it was reported that the candles were the cause of the fire. When firefighters started to overhaul the house, looking for any remaining hot spots, other potential sources of ignition were found and Fire Investigators returned to the scene.
Firefighters were able to save most of the family's Christmas presents that were found under a Christmas Tree in the dining room of the house.