Chief: Johnstown fire started by child playing with lighter

JOHNSTOWN – A Melcher Street residence caught fire Wednesday morning, and firefighters from the Johnstown and Gloversville fire departments battled the flames for four hours.

Johnstown Fire Chief Bruce Heberer said the department got the call around 11:25 a.m. to go to the house fire at 100 S. Melcher St., which was caused by a child playing with a lighter.

There were no injuries from the fire.

Despite the house’s condition after the fire, Heberer said it isn’t a total loss.

“It’s not habitable right now, because we had to cut the power to the building,” he said. “There was significant damage to one bedroom, and there was water and smoke damage … If you have matches or lighters, make sure they’re stored safely out of the reach of children.”

The American Red Cross of the Northeastern New York Region provided the two adults and two children displaced by the fire with aid, a news release said.

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