Man using torch for engine repair work sparks house fire

DACULA - A man reportedly using a torch to do some small engine repairs in the garage of his two-story home sparked an accidental fire Saturday afternoon that was quickly contained by Gwinnett fire crews, authorities said.

Firefighters found flames and smoke showing from the garage of the house - located in the 2700 block of Winky Bluff - on arrival, Gwinnett Fire Department spokesman Capt. Thomas Rutledge said. The blaze was quickly extinguished by first-due companies and contained to the garage area, which received heavy damage.

The main living space sustained slight heat and moderate smoke damage, Rutledge said.

No injuries were reported.

Teen, two children escape fire

LAWRENCEVILLE - A 17-year-old and two children were able to escape from their burning residence early Saturday thanks to an alert neighbor prior to the arrival of fire crews, authorities said.

The male teen and two small children were asleep in a front bedroom of the single-story home and woke to a neighbor banging on the front door shortly before 1:35 a.m. who saw fire and smoke coming from the house, Gwinnett Fire Department spokesman Capt. Thomas Rutledge said.

The 17-year-old told firefighters he tried to make it up the hallway to answer the door, but was forced back to the bedroom due to fire and smoke conditions. The teen reportedly went back into the bedroom and escaped via the window with the two small children.

No injuries were reported.

Firefighters found heavy fire showing and flames already through the roof of about 50 percent of the house, located in the 670 block of Willow Lane in Lawrenceville, Rutledge said. The fire was knocked down at 2:03 a.m.

"Thankfully, a neighbor was there to alert the occupants and called 911," Rutledge said. "The quick thinking of the teen was also certainly instrumental in getting out of the house alive with the two children."

The fire appeared to have originated near the garage and kitchen area, but the exact cause was undetermined.

The Red Cross was contacted to provide assistance to three adults, the teen and the two children displaced by the damage.

House under renovation sustains damage from fire

LAWRENCEVILLE - A house under renovation in the 700 block of Terrace Trace in Lawrenceville sustained damage to the attic and the rear from a Saturday evening blaze, authorities said.

A neighbor called the Gwinnett Fire Department about 8:30 p.m. for a report of smoke showing from the wood-framed residence, Gwinnett Fire Department spokesman Capt. Thomas Rutledge said. When firefighters arrived, the backside of the house and attic was heavily involved with flames and smoke. The fire was knocked down at 9:18 p.m., Rutledge said.

No injuries were reported.

- From staff reports