The Columbia Fire Department rescued two people from a structure fire near the Five Points area on Sunday.
Shortly after 7 p.m., the Columbia Fire Department responded to a fire in a two-story duplex on the 500 block of Harden Street, located in between Blossom and Wheat streets.
Two people were in one of the split rental units, which is located in the area with a large population of University of South Carolina students. The fire originated from their unit when the heat was turned on, according to Chief Aubrey Jenkins. The fire was caused by the heat coming out of a floor heater that was located beneath a couch which caught on fire.
“It was a built-in, old-time floor heater that was just a few inches away from a couch,” Jenkins said. “The heat set the couch on fire, which was mostly contained to the couch.”
Unable to leave the unit conventionally, the people went upstairs, exited through a window onto the roof, where they were rescued by the fire department, Jenkins said.
The people didn’t require medical treatment and were described as “OK,” by Jenkins, adding the fire was extinguished quickly.
The fire was contained to the living room, said Jenkins, who estimated it caused $40,000 worth of damage because of smoke and heat damage. The unit isn’t habitable, but Jenkins said the other unit in the duplex has no issues.
Jenkins said the fire was “purely accidental,” and no further investigation is required. He reminded people to be careful when turning on their heat, and to avoid having anything to close to the heaters.