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Officials checking on how house fire started

January 23, 2014 News Extra

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CRANBERRY TWP — Township police are investigating if a fire at a home in the Grandshire housing development Wednesday afternoon was a crime.

The fire at 413 Rose Drive started on a fleece blanket in the master bedroom of Donald and Colleen Hayes’ two-story house. The blanket was used as a bed for one of the homeowners’ three dogs.

“The blanket was folded and put on the floor. There were no electrical appliances or outlets and no heat vents in the area,” said state police fire marshal Trooper Duwayne Baird today.

No one was home and no one was injured, authorities said.

Colleen Hayes told investigators that she discovered the fire shortly before 11 a.m. when she returned home after driving her children to a bus stop and to school.

The Hayeses have three children. Donald Hayes was away on a business trip, authorities said.

Colleen Hayes was able to put out all or most of the fire before Cranberry volunteer firefighters got there.

While Baird said the fire was intentionally set, police Sgt. Chuck Mascellino said his department has not ruled it a crime.

“We don’t know if this is an arson because we don’t know if it was set intentionally or accidentally,” he said.

Damage was estimated at $500. The fire destroyed the blanket and damage carpeting and a portion of flooring.

The housing plan is just behind the Cranberry Commons/Cranberry Crossroads shopping plazas.

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