Keep an eye on your heaters!

The Washington, D.C., area has surprisingly seen a rise in fires over the last few weeks. Usually, problems manifest from home heating during the colder months, but this past season hasn't had as many fires as previous years. 

Except for now.

"We have had several significant fires here in the District over the last few days ... Fortunately, there have been no deaths," remarked Vito Maggiolo, D.C.'s Fire spokesman.

Maggiolo especially fears for older residents.

"I spoke to the gentleman and he said, 'Thank the Lord my smoke detector went off. That's what alerted me,'" added Maggiolo, about a fire along Alabama Avenue Southeast this past Thursday morning.

The fire involved a couple and a child who escaped before they could be hurt.

Maggiolo commented further on the situation, saying, “Everybody was out safely by the time we arrived. The whole rear of the house on the first floor was already an inferno. I suspect we would have had a much worse outcome if it was not for the early warning that the smoke detector provided them, and provides everybody.”

However, some fires have sadly claimed lives. This past Monday, one claimed a woman living in her home in Darnestown, Maryland, without smoke alarms. Homes have also been destroyed due to fires, including an area along G Street in Southeast D.C. Thirty people living in an apartment building now have been displaced due to a fire.

This past Wednesday night, another fire started around 7 p.m. in Hagerstown, claiming three people's lives while two were rescued by fire marshals.

Maggiolo said, "More often than not, the fact that folks either did not have a smoke alarm or had a smoke alarm that was inoperable—was not working, the batteries had been removed, the smoke alarm had been taken down and considered to be a nuisance—those types of events provide tragic outcomes."

We trust his words are accurate. Within the last nine days, 15 people have died in fires. 

What do you think of these fires? Let us know in the comments.