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Electrical problem caused Clearwater mobile home fire

CLEARWATER — An electrical problem sparked a fire that obliterated a mobile home Wednesday morning, according to Clearwater fire investigators.

Investigators said Thursday that the blaze was started by malfunctioning electrical wiring in a living room wall.

David and Juanita Darnold, both 68, who own the residence at 2669 Teakwood Drive in Japanese Garden Mobile Estates, were not home when the blaze started.

No one was injured in the fire, but Juanita Darnold was taken to Mease Countryside Hospital as a precaution after complaining of chest pains.

David Darnold said Thursday morning that his wife was set to be discharged soon and was doing well. The Darnolds have temporarily moved into another unit in the park, he said.

David Darnold said his wife had smelled a sewerlike "gassy" smell before the fire. The odor may have been caused by materials coming into contact with the overheated wires, said Clearwater fire spokeswoman Beth Watts.

Clearwater Fire and Rescue was called about 11:15 a.m. and the blaze was brought under control in about 20 minutes. The home was a total loss.

Neighbors reported hearing an explosion during the fire, which likely was the result of a flashover caused by combustion that blew out the windows, Watts said.

Reach Rita Farlow at farlow@sptimes.com or (727) 445-4157.

Electrical problem caused Clearwater mobile home fire 09/30/10 [Last modified: Thursday, September 30, 2010 6:33pm]
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