What caused the fire on South Compton Road Wednesday is still unknown. But Inspector John Coleman said it's the ninth one this year, which is three times more than the same time period last year.
The blaze started in the corner of a bedroom around 2:30 p.m. One of the renters happened to be home and called it in before it spread too far, and there were no injuries. The duplex on 1866 S. Compton Road had about $45,000 in damage, Coleman said, and most of it was contained to the bedroom and the floor above on one side of the home.
Four of the fires in Cleveland Heights this winter have started in the kitchen, some caused by grease left to heat too long in ovens, Coleman said.
"Teenage children start to heat something up like french fries, leave the grease on and forget about it," he said. "With grease fires, (people) get distracted, go take a nap, and then they wake up and the smoke detector is going off."
Cleveland Heights gives out free smoke detectors in City Hall, he said, so there is no reason people should not have them installed.
He said many of the fires he's seen this year can be attributed to "carelessness."
"," he said, but they only had three fires last year during the same time period. "For awhile there, a couple years ago, we had a rash of candle fires, but those have cut down a little bit."
Like the fire Wednesday, many have been in rentals, Coleman said, and he urged people make sure they are insured.
"A lot of people don't have renter's insurance, and they don't realize that they aren't covered," he said.