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Electrical problem linked to fire that destroyed home


© St. Petersburg Times, published February 13, 2001

BROOKSVILLE -- A fire that may have started with an electrical problem destroyed a house in Brooksville's Dogwood Estates on Sunday night, but the only occupant at the time made it out uninjured.

Fire officials said flames were already in the attic of the three-bedroom home at 9424 Wallien Drive when they arrived just after 7 p.m.

Danny Roberts, the fire and rescue operations chief for Hernando County, said the home was considered a total loss after the fire. He estimated its value at $140,000.

Roberts said the house belonged to the Rampt family and was being occupied by a mother and two sons -- none of whom could be reached Monday for comment.

One of the boys was home at the time of the fire, according to Roberts. While seated in the living room, he heard a crackling noise coming from another part of the house. He followed the noise to a closet that he opened, revealing flames and smoke.

There is no official cause for the fire at this time. The call drew a response from both the Brooksville Fire Department and Hernando County Fire Rescue.

It is being investigated by the state fire marshal's office. Brooksville Fire Chief James Daugherty said the fire marshal was looking into a possible electrical problem.

Roberts said family members were living with relatives.

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