Fire destroys duplex at St. Francis Village

01/15/2014 8:56 AM

01/15/2014 4:24 PM

Fire that destroyed a duplex at St. Francis Village in Southern Tarrant County on Wednesday morning appears to be accidental, but investigators probably won’t be able to determine the exact cause because of the extensive damage, a fire official said.

“We believe there was a golf cart that was plugged into a charger and it was near a breaker box outside of the duplex, but we don’t know exactly where the fire started,” Tarrant County Fire Marshal Randy Renois said Wednesday afternoon.

Both sides of the duplex were occupied when the fire broke out but the residents got out safely. No injuries were reported.

The blaze started shortly after 8 a.m. on S t. Clare Drive.

Although it was originally reported as an explosion, Sylvia Wallace, executive assistant director at the retirement center, said residents had actually heard a loud pop, not an explosion.

“We don’t know what caused it,” Wallace said. “It’s probably electrical.”

St. Francis Village sits just east of Benbrook Lake. It is home to about 500 residents, Wallace said.

Crowley Fire Chief Robert Loftin said that when firefighters arrived they found heavy flames coming from the duplex.

Firefighters from seven area fire departments fought the blaze for almost an hour before it was extinguished.

“All residents have been accounted for at this time,” Loftin said.

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