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West Council Street fire began at electrical outlet

By Shavonne Walker

SALISBURY — Fire officials say a Tuesday morning fire began in the living room at an electrical outlet, causing about $10,000 worth of damage. The homeowners, Ernest and Gwen Seamans, were not home when the fire occurred.

Gwen said she discovered her house was on fire after receiving a call of concern from a friend who worked at Bank of America, located behind the home.

“She said ‘are you alright?’ ” Gwen said Tuesday.

The friend said her West Council Street home was on fire.

Gwen said she sped all the way from Mooresville where she worked because she was worried her son and godson were inside. Neither were home, but that didn’t stop her younger son, Dondrea, from sprinting toward brown and yellow house. Firefighters had to pull Dondrea back when headed up the steps. He said later he thought his brother was in the house. He also feared the dog was still in the house.

The family just got their new puppy, “Socks.” The rat-terrier and Pomeranian mix was inside a kennel in a back hallway. A firefighter who searched the house pulled the dog and the kennel from inside and handed it off to another firefighter at the door.

Firefighters could be seen consoling Dondrea and giving Socks oxygen.

Gwen said later she was just grateful her sons were not home and the dog was safe. She said all of the possessions that were ruined from smoke, water and fire damage were just “material.”

City Fire Marshal Terry Smith said they aren’t sure exactly if there was a malfunction in the outlet, but are confident it started at the outlet.

He said there was fire, water and smoke damage in the living room and hallway area.

Firefighters had to provide ventilation to the roof so the fire and smoke could escape. Smith said there was also some smoke damage in the attic area.

The following fire departments responded: Locke, Faith, East Spencer, Salisbury, Granite Quarry and the Rowan County Rescue Squad. The Salisbury City Fire Marshal’s Office investigated.

Contact reporter Shavonne Walker at 704-797-4253.



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