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Howard County firefighters responded to three separate fires within eight hours on Sunday in Elkridge and Ellicott City.

While two were house fires were caused during cooking, fire officials said the third fire engulfed a shed after improper ash disposal.

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The first call occurred around 1 p.m., officials said, when firefighters went to the 5500 block of Landing Road in Elkridge and found a shed on fire near a residence. The Office of the Fire Marshal later found ashes from a fire pit thrown out nearby. No injuries were reported.

About an hour later, the department was called to the 7000 block of Ducketts Lane – roughly three miles from the first fire – and found the home's sprinkler system had controlled the blaze. Officials said that fire was caused by food that had burned on the stove. A resident received burns on their hands and arms and was taken to Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center.

Later in the evening, firefighters and paramedics were called to the 5300 block of Dorsey Hall Drive in Ellicott City after someone reported smelling burnt food and hearing a smoke alarm go off. After arriving at the home, firefighters forced open the door to the home, found an unresponsive resident and took them outside. Food was later found inside the stove, which had caught fire. The resident was taken to Howard County General Hospital for smoke inhalation.

Fire officials ask residents to stay in the kitchen whenever they're cooking. Residents should also dispose of ashes only after waiting for them to cool over several days and then placing them in a metal container with a lid, at least 10 feet from any structure.

For more information and tips, go to the department's Facebook page at facebook.com/hcdfrs or Twitter page at twitter.com/hcdfrs.



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