By Assistant Chief Jim Eden,
Lee’s Summit Fire Department

On Wednesday, September 20, 2023, at 5:03 p.m., the Lee’s Summit Fire Department responded to a structure fire in the 1500 Block of SW Highway Lane. A passerby reported smoke and fire from the house’s roof with no one around.

When the fire department arrived, smoke was visible from the roof of a one-story, single-family vacant residence under renovation. A worker was in the backyard attempting to extinguish a brush pile fire near the house. 

The house fire involved burning debris in the gutter that spread into the attic. Firefighters pulled down the ceiling in the kitchen and extinguished the fire in the attic, while crews extinguished the fire in the gutter and the brush pile in the backyard. The incident was under control by 5:15 p.m. 

The fire damaged half of the attic. The fire did not extend into the living space of the house. The fire outside the home was limited to the gutter and a small portion of the roof eave.

Workers renovating the house and property were burning brush in a fire pit near the structure. Airborne embers from the fire ignited debris in the house’s gutter and spread to the roof eave and attic.

With Fall approaching, a reminder that the burning brush and leaves in the City of Lee’s Summit is prohibited. Chimineas and patio fireplaces are allowed without a permit, as long as the fire is covered with the screen lid and burning seasoned firewood only. Keep the appliances on a non-combustible surface at least 15 feet from structures. Never leave fires unattended, and always extinguish the fire before leaving the area. 

The burning of vegetation in agriculturally zoned areas and open recreational fires (campfires and fire pits) requires a permit from the fire department.