Incense blamed for blaze that caused $100,000 damage

Eight people were left homeless after a fire destroyed one unit of a duplex and damaged a second in Taft Tuesday night.
The fire broke out in the 1,000 square foot structure in the 400 block of Third Street between Kern and Lucard at 7:08 p.m.
Heavy smoke and flames were coming from the rear of one unit when firefighters arrived.
Both units were occupied when the fire started, and all eight people, four adults and four children, were able to escape the fire uninjured, Kern County Fire Department Battalion Chief Danny Thomas said.
The people displaced by the fire said they did not need the assistance of the Red Cross, Thomas said.
The fire was knocked down in about 25 minutes.
Firefighters said the fire was caused by incense burning in a closet.
The fire destroyed one unit and the second unit sustained heavy smoke damage, Thomas said.
Total damage was estimated at $100,000 to the structure and contents with a $225,000 save.
An engine and ladder truck from Taft, and engines from Maricopa, Fellows and McKittrick all responded to the fire.