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Electrical short caused house fire on Holly Drive
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Firefighters respond to a residential fire on Holly Drive in Gainesville on Thursday, Jan. 6. Two people were displaced. (Photo courtesy Josh Hope)

Update: An electrical short in a panel box and HVAC system caused a house fire on Holly Drive in Gainesville on Thursday, Jan. 6, according to authorities. 

The short sparked a fire in the furnace inside the home’s utility closet, which spread through the HVAC ducts in the house, said Gainesville Fire Division Chief Keith Smith.

The fire also reached the main floor and basement of the house.

Gainesville Police officers assisted two residents who escaped the home. One resident was evaluated for smoke inhalation, Smith said.

Firefighters also rescued a cat.

“Firefighters remained on scene for approximately three hours to make sure there was no fire extension,” Smith wrote in an email. “During the salvage and overhaul phase, one cat was rescued from the house and is fine.”

The cat was not injured. 

Smith said a damage estimate was complicated because of how much wiring and interior building materials would need to be replaced.


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Firefighters rescued a cat Thursday during a house fire on Holly Drive. - photo by Gainesville Fire Department

Gainesville firefighters responded about 6:30 p.m. Thursday to a fire at a home on Holly Drive.

Responding units found fire and heavy smoke coming from the main floor and basement, according to Division Chief Keith Smith.

Two people escaped from the house with assistance from Gainesville police, Smith said in an email. One resident was evaluated for smoke inhalation.

Smith said assistance had been requested for the residents, and the Fire Marshal’s office is investigating the cause.