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Twelve people escape unharmed from duplex fire

A total of 12 people — five adults and seven children — escaped unharmed from a duplex fire Saturday morning near 20th and Burleigh streets.

One of the people who lived in the house told WISN 12 News she smelled smoke and warned everyone else to get out of the building.

“I started feeling it getting real hot, so I started touching the ceiling a little bit and then the fire alarm went off. I saw smoke, and we went to get her jacket. I saw a fire right in the ceiling,” one resident said.

No one was injured.

Battalion Chief Dan Lipski said firefighters found near-hoarder conditions in the attic.

“We were able to extinguish the fire (but) unfortunately, it has caused extensive damage to the building,” Lipski said. “Somebody had taken up residency in the attic. That’s why there was so much stuff up there.”

Lipski estimated the damage could be more than $150,000.

The cause of the fire is yet to be determined.

Victoria Saha

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