Early Morning Fire Damages Cedar Rapids Residence

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By Aaron Hepker

511 17th St. SE, Cedar Rapids

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CEDAR RAPIDS – An early-morning fire heavily damaged at an apartment at 511 17th St. SE Sunday morning.

The apartment’s renter, Daniel Lee, wasn’t home when neighbor Drew Detert smelled smoke and looked outside to see an orange glow coming from inside the single-unit apartment, formerly a beauty shop.

Detert, 38, of 513 17th St. SE, called 911 at 5:42 a.m. Firefighters arrived to find smoke coming from the rear of the structure. They entered through the front door and quickly extinguished a fire in the kitchen area, but discovered the flames had extended into the attic.

Crews extinguished flames in the the attic area putting a hose through a scuttle hole, but needed to cut holes in the ceiling and an access hole through the roof to ensure all the fire had been doused, fire department spokesman Greg Buelow said.

The fire left “significant” damage to the kitchen and attic area, Buelow said, with heat damage in the rear and smoke damage throughout the structure.
The fire’s cause is as yet undetermined, and the investigation continues.

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