Roslindale house erupts in flames

Fire on Newburg Street in Roslindale

UPDATE: Smoker to blame, BFD says.

The Boston Fire Department reports no injuries from a fire that erupted at 6 Newburg St., at Belgrade, shortly before 10:30 a.m.

The fire spread from a first-floor porch to the second floor and attic before it was knocked down, the department reports. Damage was estimated at $350,000, the department says, adding the cause is under investigation.

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Re Hot BBQ

Perhaps, but unlikely. It's been a bit too cool to have a BBQ for the last couple of days. Had there been hot coals, it seems that the wind would have stirred them up by now. (Time sensitive link; data good as of ~ 2:03 p.m., 11/11/17)

Maybe a careless cigarette butt shortly before the fire? How scary and upsetting for these people. I'm glad they -- and hopefully -- their pets got out okay. Let's hope we learn more.

Appears to have started outside

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I'm not a professional but after looking at the active fire images and post fire clean-up images available online, this started outside on the porch itself.

The "alligator patterns" suggest it started on the 1st floor porch, left-side (facing house) and extended upward from there to the soffit then from there into the attic space. The attic is an open "chimney" type space and fire will travel fast there as there are no obstructions, similar to outside space.

The high flame and burn of the porches may be due to what ever was used to weatherize the wood. Many old homes in the area that date back to WWI and WWII used linseed oils and similar to moisture-proof flooring. Multiple layers of paint along the trim and ceilings will also melt. As a result this space becomes similar to a candle wick and promotes oil vapors and high burn. The bright yellow flame in the early photos will be important to the fire investigation team because this suggests hydrocarbons of some nature which would be in the paint and wood treatments.

Fire travels upward, then lateral (left and right) when it's vertical path is impeded, very similar to how a deciduous tree grows and spreads its branches.. The burn pattern is stronger and more extensive on the left side of the porches. As a result the fire eventually extended into the 2nd floor and 3rd floor attic space due to pattern and intensity.

You'd be staring at your

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You'd be staring at your frozen hose. It was 25 this morning. That amount of fire only takes a few minutes too, so the neighbors probably haven't realized it's happening yet, if they're even home.

All Are Safe

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I know the homeowners and she, her husband, her mother and their cat all made it out safely.

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