Hood River fire crews say a working smoke detector likely saved a homeowner from serious injury or death.
A fire started in the home on Sherman Avenue around 2:30 Sunday morning.
Crews said cracks in the chimney mortar caused the blaze, as the fire in the fireplace lit the wood surrounding the chimney.
The chimney was cleaned in the fall of 2012, but the cracks were not detected, firefighters said.
"If your chimney shows signs of being old or the mortar appears to be falling out, have a chimney service inspect the liner," says Chief Wells. "That is the only way this fire could have been prevented, by having the mortar replaced or inserting a fully enclosed liner inside the chimney."
The homeowner woke up to the fire alarm and was able to get out.
No one was hurt.
There was no report on a damage estimate as of Sunday morning.
This marked the first fire of 2013 for Hood River.
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