A Kansas woman was allegedly trying to kill a bug with a lighter but accidentally burned down her apartment instead.
Local fire officials responded to the fire at around 3:45 a.m. at the Fairlawn Green Apartments in Topeka.
The Topeka Fire Department said the damages were estimated to be up to $140,000.
Monique Quarles said she was in her apartment with her daughter, Ausha Scott, and her 2-year-old daughter when the fire started.
Quarles’ daughter told her about the bug, she said. She picked it up, put it in her hand and lit it on fire.
She then raised the mattress to check for more bugs and discovered a “medium sized” one.
Quarles said she used a flip-style lighter to kill the bug in the master bedroom, but then it “started sparking.”
“When I grabbed the bug and I had it, I went to light it and then the lighter started sparking, so these sparks then went onto the box springs,” she said. “The sparks just started flying on it and inside of it.”
She and her daughter tried putting out the fire, but it quickly spread in the apartment.
“I said, ‘Get out, get the baby, call 911.’ And that’s what we did,” Quarles said, adding that she alerted her neighbors to evacuate the building.
Fire officials said 17 people were displaced because of the fire. One person was taken to a hospital for smoke inhalation, but the condition wasn’t serious, fire officials said.
Source: The Washington Post