Laguna Beach : Phone Call Alerts Man in Burning House

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A man sleeping in a back room of a “very old” house near Laguna Beach escaped injury Friday when neighbors phoned to alert him that smoke was pouring out from under the eaves, an Orange County Fire Department spokeswoman said.

Investigators said that the single-story house, in an unincorporated area of the county on Laguna Canyon Road, caught fire shortly after noon and that a free-standing stove pipe inside the house was responsible, according to spokeswoman Kathleen Cha.

Fire and water damage to the attic and two bedrooms was estimated at $5,000.

The sleeping man was identified only as a friend of the person renting the house, Jeremiah J. Kelly, 44. No one else was in the house at the time.


A smoke detector in the house had been disconnected, Cha said.