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Kitchen fire sweeps through Palolo house, leaves 4 homeless

By Star-Advertiser staff

LAST UPDATED: 4:06 p.m. HST, Jan 1, 2014

A fire caused by a stove burner left on in the kitchen destroyed a Palolo Valley home on New Year's Eve.

At about 9:40 p.m., firefighters responded to a blaze at a three-bedroom, single-family home on the 2000 block of 10th Ave. The fire originated in the kitchen and swept halfway through the house when firefighters arrived, according to Capt. Terry Seelig, spokesman of the Honolulu Fire Department.

Two residents were right outside of the home, celebrating New Year's Eve with neighbors when the fire occurred. Two other residents were off-island at the time.

The blaze was under control at 9:44 p.m. and extinguished at 10:48 p.m. Seelig said the kitchen, living room, a bedroom and half of another bedroom were heavily damaged. No injuries were reported.

Damage to the structure and its contents were estimated at $400,000.

Smoke and noise from firecrackers on New Year's Eve possibly delayed discovery of the fire, said Seelig. "The fire wasn't noticed for awhile because of the smoke in the air and the noise," he said. "While firecrackers didn't cause it, perhaps the smoke and noise contributed to the lack of discovery that it became a serious fire."

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