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North Hall fire leaves 13 homeless

Electrical short may have caused blaze

POSTED: January 25, 2009 1:36 p.m.

An early Sunday fire destroyed a mobile home in North Hall and displaced 13 people.

Hall County firefighters responded to the fire at 3:43 a.m. at 5874 Cleveland Highway, just north of Gailey Road and behind Christian Hills Baptist Church, said Fire Chief David Kimbrell.

They arrived to find the 500-square-foot structure about 90 percent involved in flames.

An occupant asked firefighters to check the children for smoke inhalation. Fire officials then learned that seven adults and six children lived inside the home. At least one family, the Elizabeth Guiterrez family, lived in the mobile home owned by Victor Nealy.

Two children and one adult were taken to Northeast Georgia Medical Center; the children were treated for smoke inhalation and the adult was treated for minor burns to his foot, Kimbrell said.

"As far as I know, they all were released (from the hospital)," Kimbrell said Sunday afternoon.

The man burned his foot trying to get a burning mattress out of the home.

"The initial determination on cause (of the fire) is an electrical short under the mobile home that burned up through the floor onto (the) mattress that was on the floor in one of the rooms," Kimbrell said.

The home had no smoke alarms.

"We are very lucky this was not a major disaster," Kimbrell said.

The American Red Cross is helping the trailer residents with lodging and clothing.

"They are strictly funded by donations at a time when charitable donations are down," Kimbrell said of Red Cross, which has been kept busy by numerous fires this winter. "So, I’d like to put in a good plug for them."



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