Malfunctioning Gas Stove Causes Merrifield Townhouse Fire

News release from Fairfax County Fire and Rescue

A gas stove malfunctioned and started a house fire in the Merrifield area shortly before midnight Friday.

Units from Fairfax County Fire and Rescue and the City of Fairfax Fire Department were dispatched for a reported kitchen fire in the 9400 block of Lee Highway in the Merrifield section of Fairfax County.

Units arrived on scene to find smoke showing from the front of a two-story, end unit townhome. Crews quickly located and extinguished a kitchen fire located on the first floor. No civilian or firefighter injuries were reported.

There were six occupants home at the time of the fire. Working smoke alarms alerted the occupants to the fire. The occupants were able to evacuate the townhouse prior to fire department arrival. One occupant called 9-1-1.

Fire Investigators determined that the fire was accidental in nature and started behind the gas stove in the kitchen. The fire was caused by the gas stove malfunctioning shortly after the occupants turned the oven on.

Five occupants were displaced because of the fire. Red Cross assistance was offered but declined. Damages as a result of the fire were approximately $93,750.