Sacto 9-1-1
December 26, 2012
Cat perishes in Arden-area fire traced to oil-soaked rags

Rags soaked in linseed oil have been identified as the cause of an early morning fire at an Arden-area home that claimed the life of a pet cat.

A resident of the 2800 block of Becerra Way was awakened about 4 a.m. by a crackling sound, and when she went into the kitchen, she saw a glow coming from the garage, according to a Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District news release.

The woman awakened the other resident of the home, and both were able to get out of the house and call 911.

Firefighters, who arrived five minutes later, found heavy fire in the garage, attic and kitchen. Flames from the garage had caused two vehicles in the driveway to catch fire, and flames shooting through the roof and eaves of the house threatened a neighbor's home.

Firefighters immediately attacked the house fire and, as additional crews arrived, searched for pets, extinguished the cars and protected the neighboring residence, fire officials said.

They were able to contain the fire to the garage, attic and kitchen, although the rest of the house suffered smoke damage.

One of two cats at the home perished in the fire. The other was unharmed.

Officials said the house lacked a working smoke alarm.

Investigators traced the cause of the fire to rags that had been soaked in linseed oil. Fire officials remind residents to be careful when using any type of wood stain. They recommend keeping used rags in a bucket with a lid and storing the bucket outside, away from the house.

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