BEND, Ore. (KTVZ) – A stick of burning incense sparked a fire that destroyed a fifth-wheel camper, the home to family of four, east of Bend Thursday night, but the occupants escaped unhurt despite a lack of smoke detectors, a Bend Fire & Rescue official said Friday.
Bend firefighters responded shortly before 10 p.m. to the reported fire in the 22000 block of Bear Creek Road, Battalion Chief Trish Connolly said.
Arriving crews found the 1981 fifth-wheel camper ablaze, she said. They learned the family evacuated after finding the fire and no injuries were reported.
Crews were able to quickly put out the blaze and keep it from extending to any other structures or vegetation, Connolly said.
The residents were alerted of the fire when a family member opened the bathroom door and found the room ablaze, she said. They quickly fled and called 911.
An investigation completed Friday afternoon determined a stick of incense was placed in the bathroom, held by a wicker basket, Connolly said. The incense caught the basket and contents on fire, and the blaze quickly spread to the bathroom and the rest of the camper.
Connolly said the camper was not insured, but the family does have a place to stay and receive support.
"Bend Fire & Rescue would like to remind the community that the burning of incense can start a fire if not properly used and disposed," Connolly said in a news release.
"It is important when burning incense to make sure the holder is on-flammable, the embers are kept away from combustible items, and the incense is properly extinguished before leaving the incense unattended," she added.