Two Texas agencies investigating Lacy Lakeview training fire

Two Texas agencies investigating Lacy Lakeview training fire

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The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality and the Office of the State Fire Marshal have opened an investigation into a training fire Sunday in Lacy Lakeview that melted the siding of a house next door.

The Lacy Lakeview Volunteer Fire Department conducted a practice burn Sunday morning at 218 Birch St., a home owned by City Manager Calvin Hodde since January.

Lacy Lakeview officials have said that when the heat of the flames at 218 Birch began to melt the vinyl siding on the house next door, the focus shifted from the training fire to preventing further damage to the house where John and Susan May had lived together for 46 years. years. The Mays and their pets were able to get out safely, and despite the intense heat that even melted the interior blinds, the flames did not spread to their home.

“The city takes responsibility and we're going to make it right,” Lacy Lakeview Building Manager Thomas Cardoza said Monday.

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The TCEQ received a complaint Monday related to unauthorized outdoor burning in Lacy Lakeview, commission spokeswoman Laura Lopez said.

“An investigation was conducted the next day and is currently ongoing,” Lopez said by email Thursday. “Additional information will be available when the investigative report is approved.”

The state fire marshal's office, at the request of the Lacy Lakeview Police Department and a local resident, opened an investigation into the fire at 218 Birch St. of Lacy Lakeview, spokesman Gardner Selby said.

McLennan County District Attorney Josh Tetens said the fire and damage to the Mays' home likely did not meet the legal definition of arson or any other criminal act. However, a civil attorney could file a lawsuit to establish liability and seek damages, Tetens said.

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