Candle causes duplex fire, displaces family of five

EUGENE, Ore. -- A family of five lost their home Sunday evening when an unattended candle caught a South Eugene duplex on fire, Eugene-Springfield fire crews said.

Firefighters responded to the duplex near 35th and Willamette St. at around 7:10 p.m. Sunday to find that the side of the duplex was engulfed in flames. Firefighters said everyone was out of the house when they arrived.

Crews contained the fire, however there was heavy smoke damage to the duplex unit.

Battalion Chief Jeff Kronser says an unattended burning candle in the upstairs bedroom was the culprit, causing at least $5,000 worth of damages.

Joaquin Herrera lives at the house and said he had doused the flames with a fire extinguisher, however he called emergency crews when the fire flared back up.

Herrera said it is unfortunate the fire came so close to Christmas, however he's happy it didn't cause more damage to the family's home.

The Red Cross stepped in to help the family that was displaced by the fire. The other duplex space was left vacant.