(Mankato, MN) – A fire Monday near Old Town was caused by a space heater, according to Mankato Public Safety.

Jeff Bengtson, Associate Director, said the space heater was left too close to combustibles.  Bengston said that the upstairs duplex was unoccupied when the fire started, and that the space heater was left on without anyone home.

“A reminder for citizens that space heaters are only to be used for temporary heating or supplemental heating,” said Bengston.  “It’s very important that a three-foot clearance is maintained around that space heater so that we don’t get combustibles close by that could ignite and cause a fire. ”

Bengston said the residents were not using the space heater as a primary heat source.

The home is a duplex with two units, but Bengston said the damage was contained primarily to the upstairs and the shared attic.  There was also some siding damage to an adjacent property.  “The firefighters did a remarkable job of containing [the fire] to the structure of origin.”

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