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Local Visitor Center garners honor from state association

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House destroyed in fire

South Boston NewsSouth Boston News
The home of Grace Richardson on L.P. Bailey Highway two miles north of Halifax was destroyed Friday morning in a house fire.
SoVaNow.com / December 20, 2013


A Friday morning fire gutted a home on L.P. Bailey Highway, two miles north of Halifax, before firefighters were able to bring the blaze under control.

The single-story brick structure was home to Grace Richardson, her son and granddaughter, all of whom were out of the house when the fire started sometime around 9 a.m. on Friday.

The fire appears to have started in the carport and spread into the living room and attic. The home, valued at $250,000 including the family’s possessions, suffered damages estimated around $140,000, said Town of Halifax Fire Chief Darryl Dawson.

From outside, the home appeared ruined, its furnishings charred or soaked from the effort to bring the blaze under control. By the time firefighters rushed to the scene after receiving the 911 call at 9:20 a.m., the home was fully involved in flames.

There was no obvious cause of the fire, which remains under investigation, said Dawson.

Richardson, who has lived at the residence for 17 years, said she was at a loss to explain how the fire could have started. Standing in the yard of her gutted home, surrounded by family and neighbors, she said had been careful that morning to make sure all her household appliances were turned off before she left for work at Pathway Day Store in Scottsburg.

“I make sure everything is off when I leave … I double-check when I leave in the morning. I didn’t use the stove this morning. I didn’t use the toaster. It is a mystery to me,” she said.

Richardson said she left around 8:15 a.m. that morning and nothing seemed to be amiss.

The home was insured, and she said family members have offered her and the home’s other occupants a place to stay.

The call was answered by three fire departments — Halifax, Liberty and South Boston — and the Halifax County Rescue Squad. The Halifax Volunteer Fire Department sent nine members and three trucks, Liberty responded with 10 members and two trucks, and South Boston sent eight members and one truck, said Dawson.







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