4-year-old starts house fire after playing with lighter

HUTCHINSON, Kan. (KWCH) A 4-year-old child playing with a lighter caused an early morning house fire in south Hutchinson.

The Hutchinson Fire Department says emergency crews arrived on the scene of a fire at 1400 East 5th Avenue around 10:45 a.m. on Saturday.

Fire crews found a pile of clothes on fire that had started in a closet. They quickly contained the fire to that area.

The family was inside the home at the time but managed to escape without injury.

Investigators determined the cause of the fire to be a child playing with a lighter.

"Teach your children to never play with matches or lighters. Make it a habit of placing these items up and away from young children. In addition, take time to teach your children how to respond to the sound of a smoke alarm. Teach them to get low and get out when they hear it. A child who has coached properly ahead of time will have a better chance to be safe. New statistics show that once a smoke alarms sounds, you have 3 minutes to get out safely," says Battalion Chief William Lang.

Hutchinson Fire Department was assisted by the Hutchinson Police Department, Kansas Gas, and Westar Energy.