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One injured in latest house fire

It is the fifth Newport-Mesa home fire so far this year. Officials say the blaze originated in the fireplace.

January 08, 2011|By Joseph Serna, joseph.serna@latimes.com

Editor's note: This corrects the night the fire happened.

One person was injured and five people were displaced by a Costa Mesa house fire Friday night, the fifth fire already this year in Newport-Mesa.

Authorities said the blaze ignited at about 9:29 p.m. in a single story home at 769 W. Wilson Street when a fire in the home's fireplace got out of control. The fireplace didn't have a screen, so it was not properly protected, officials said.

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Initial reports by residents indicated no one was in the house when firefighters showed up, about four minutes after the call, said Battalion Chief Kevin Diamond. Firefighters found one person inside and rescued them. The victim suffered facial burns and respiratory issues. They were treated at a local hospital, officials said.

In all, five people were displaced because of the fire and the American Red Cross is assisting them, according to the fire department.

Firefighters took half an hour to put out the flames, which required using four fire engines, two trucks, a heavy rescue squad and assistance from the Huntington Beach Fire Department. Officials said 29 people in all responded to the scene.

Between Jan. 1 to 2, Newport Beach firefighters also had their hands full because of either faulty fireplaces or chimneys or residents not using them properly. No one was injured in those incidents, but homeowners did suffer hundreds of thousands of dollars in property damage.

Safety officials want to urge homeowners to have their chimney's cleaned annually and fireplaces cleaned and monitored when in use.

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