Harlan Apartment fire cause listed as accidental


November 30th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

A fire that destroyed a 102-year old apartment building in Harlan Wednesday evening, was apparently caused by a carelessly tossed cigarette. According to Harlan Fire Chief Roger Bissen, a resident in one of the apartments at 707 Durant Street was lighting a cigarette with a butane lighter when the cigarette flared up. The resident reacted by quickly tossing the cigarette, which rolled and ignited materials in the room.

The fire, which started just after 6-p.m. Wednesday, ended-up displacing at least eight residents, one of whom was treated at the local hospital, after suffering from smoke inhalation.

The State Fire Marshall’s Office investigated the fire Thursday, and ruled the cause as accidental.