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Icy Gas Meter Blamed For House Fire in Westport

Photo Credit: File photo

WESTPORT, Conn. -- The boiler of a Westport home caught fire Thursday morning due to an ice-covered gas meter, according to the Westport Fire Department.

The owner of the home on Lees Lane used a fire extinguisher to douse the flames on the outside of his boiler about 9:30 a.m. Thursday, according to a statement from Deputy Fire Chief Robert Kepchar.

The homeowner said the boiler had not been working properly and the burner on his gas stove was not igniting fully, Kepchar said.

Firefighters shut off the emergency switch to the unit and shut off the gas meter in the rear of the home, where they noticed that the pressure regulator on the gas meter was encased in ice because of a dripping gutter above the unit, he said.

Firefighters ventilated the home to remove gases and smoke, Kepchar said. A fire inspector was called to the scene as well as a worker from the gas company.

Kepchar reminded homeowners to have their heating equipment serviced yearly and to call for service if they suspect a problem with appliances.

If you have appliances powered by natural gas or propane, make sure that the gas regulators and equipment outside the home are kept free of accumulating snow and ice to keep them functioning properly, he said.

Homeowners are also reminded to have operating smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, and to be vigilant when using fireplaces and wood stoves and properly dispose of ashes.

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