Fire

CECILTON — Investigators are blaming an outdoor cooking mishap for a blaze that destroyed a car and damaged a shed in Cecilton over the weekend, according to the Maryland Office of the State Fire Marshal.

An occupant of the residence in the 200 block of West Main Street called 911 at 6:30 p.m. Saturday, after discovering the blaze in the backyard, fire officials reported.

Sr. Deputy State Fire Marshal Oliver J. Alkire, an agency spokesman, told the Cecil Whig that the residents were using a propane-fueled smoker to cook chickens and sausages in their backyard and that the smoker ignited nearby grass and leaves on the ground.

Flames from that ground-cover fire spread to a 2013 Kia Sportage that was parked nearby. From there, Alkire added, the fire spread to a nearby 8’-by-12’ wooden shed.

“The occupants were inside the home when they discovered the fire,” Alkire noted.

Approximately 10 firefighters with the Cecilton Volunteer Fire Co. battled the blaze for about 15 minutes, before bringing it under control, according to fire officials.

Investigators identified Christina Vettori as the shed owner, as well as the homeowner, and Kelly Ann Stafford as the owner of the Kia.

The fire caused an estimated $15,000 in total damage, according to Alkire, who outlined, “The car sustained extensive damage, which we consider to be totaled, and shed sustained minor damage.”

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