Wood burning stove blamed for house fire - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

Wood burning stove blamed for house fire

By Samantha Jordan – bio| email

SMITH COUNTY, TX (KLTV) - A wood burning stove is believed to have destroyed an East Texas family's home.

Early Tuesday morning, firefighters were called to a home in the 12,000 block of FM14, just South of I-20 in Smith County.

For years Steven Kovacs and his wife were full-time "RV-ers," taking everything they owned with them on the road. But after a trip to East Texas 6 years ago, the Kovacs decided stay and call Tyler their permanent home.

"We were at Tyler state park driving through here this place was available so I decided we're going to stay here, and we like it, we like it here," said Steven Kovacs, lost home in fire.

Now the home the Kovacs thought they would have forever is gone. Steven says he and his wife were just trying to stay warm

"I started a fire in the wood burning stove and it overheated and a good half an hour later the smoke alarm went off and I checked everything and I noticed the roof was smoking," said Steven.

In a desperate attempt to save their home, Steven says he tried to put out the fire himself before calling the fire department for help.

"When we got here, the house was fully involved the fire was coming out of the roof we started attacking it and called for assistance from Winona and Lindale to come help us," said Fire Chief Tim Thompson, Red Springs Fire Department.

Officials say the fire started in the attic and later broke through the roof causing it to cave into the living room. Firefighters took about an hour to get the fire under control, and then another hour to put the fire out.

"We lost everything that we have over there right now and so we have to start a new, I'm going to try and rebuild but it's going to take a long time to do it," said Steven. 

And while the Kovacs don't have any friends or family in the area, they have no plans to leave the place they call home. 

Smith County Fire Marshals say a failure in the metal stove pipe was the cause of the fire.

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