Firefighters are keeping a close eye on one Northwest Oklahoma City home after they battled flames there three separate times this morning. Fire officials say the home's excessive clutter made it very difficult to fight.
Just before 2 a.m. Thursday, Oklahoma City Firefighters were called to a home on NW 43rd St. for a bedroom fire. The homeowner told investigators he left candles burning while he went to sleep.
But just two hours later before 4 a.m. firefighters were called back to the home when the fire rekindled, and the roof was filled with flames. Around 8:30 a.m., fire crews were back a third time to put out more hot spots.
Firefighters say loads of clutter and debris inside the house made fighting the fire difficult.
"The inside of the home was just about as packed as the rest of the garage area, so it was very challenging for fire crews to locate the seat of fire and stretch those lines out," says OKC Fire Dept. Major Tim Long.
Crews kept coming by the house in the afternoon to check on it. The home has been powered by a generator since 2011. Neighbors say the homeowner has been hoarding his mother's old things for years.
Lera Custer lives down the street and says she wishes there was an easy way to talk to neighbors about hoarding before it turns dangerous.
"It makes me think, and wonder you know, is it going to happen again soon because somebody could strike a match right over there, and it would be just like this house," Custer says.
Fire officials say the home had $10,000 worth of damage and lost about $5,000 worth of contents.
No one was injured, and the cause of the all the fires is under investigation.