A 100-year-old house in Caldwell County was destroyed Saturday morning by a fire that began in a dryer vent, officials said.
The couple and two children who live in the two-story, wooden frame house on Temple Hill Church Road, located in the Little River community, were not injured.
Caldwell County Fire Marshal Robbie Wilkie said the family was not home at the time. The mother had taken her daughter shopping, and the father and his son were at a neighbor’s house.
But before the family left, a load of laundry had been placed in the clothes dryer, Wilkie said.
A passerby noticed the flames, and firefighters were on their way just before 11 a.m. when the homeowner noticed smoke nearby and returned home, Wilkie said. But by then, the house was engulfed in flames and totally destroyed.
Firefighters from the Little River Fire Department, the Grace Chapel Fire Department and the Saw Mills Fire Department worked to put out the blaze and had to rotate frequently as a result of Saturday’s heat.
No injuries were reported.
Officials said the fire started in the dryer vent.
“We always recommend that people clean out their dryer vents at least twice a year,” Wilkie said in a statement. “ I am not talking about the front vent. They need to move the dryer out from the wall and clean out the vent that connects the dryer to the outside. That is where the lint can build up the most and be the worst fire hazard.”
The fire caused an estimated $150,000 in damage. Officials said family and neighbors are helping the family.