Backyard breakfast, extreme hoarding blamed for massive house fire

Flames and large plumes of thick, black smoke could be seen from SkyEye 13 HD
February 13, 2013 12:48:04 PM PST
A backyard barbeque and an extreme case of hoarding led to a massive house fire Wednesday morning, fire officials say, creating a huge plume of smoke that firefighters could see before they even got to the scene.

SkyEye 13 HD flew over the fire in the 7000 block of Winfree in southeast Houston at around 9:30am. Flames were shooting through the roof, and there appeared to be a second fire involving another structure close to the home.

According to officials at the scene, the resident was cooking breakfast in the backyard of his home. When he briefly turned away from the grill, the fire flamed up and ignited some things nearby.

An HFD spokesperson told Eyewitness News that this was an extreme case of hoarding and that there were a large number of items stored in the yard of the home. The blaze spread quickly through the debris, which fueled the fire, and the wind aided the flames, catching the house on fire.

Firefighters say the homeowner got out safely. The house is a total loss.

The fire was tapped out in just over an hour.
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