A couple whose Calverton Hills townhouse caught fire Saturday afternoon said they were forced to use a kerosene heater since their landlord shut off their power four days ago.
Joe Coffey, 50, said he was in Southampton when neighbors called him about 3 p.m. to say they saw smoke pouring out of the place he shares with girlfriend Sharon Taylor, 33, and their two pitbulls. The family moved in last summer.
“I love my dogs,” said Mr. Coffey as he cuddled his white pitbull. “We used the heaters so our dogs would stay warm.”
Mr. Coffey said he and Ms. Taylor weren’t home at the time of the fire that started at 105 Hills Spur and spread to the adjacent townhouse, 104. Riverhead Fire Chief Tony White said he believed a woman escaped and a dog was rescued at the scene. No injuries were reported.
Riverhead and Flanders Fire Departments responded to the scene. Firefighters were on the roof breaking holes as smoke came pouring out of the building. They also threw chairs and boxes out the window.
It was unclear what started the fire, which was brought under control at 3:40 p.m. Mr. Coffey didn’t say exactly what he suspected caused the fire, but did mention about the kerosene heaters. The Brookhaven Town fire marshal was called to the scene to investigate.
No other details on the woman rescued were immediately available.