An Abingdon family returned home Monday evening to discover a water pipe had burst while they had been away, causing several thousand dollars in damage but perhaps saving the home from a far greater threat.
After being away from the home since April 8, the homeowner returned to the two-story, townhouse residence in the 3200-block of Pinecrest Court in Abingdon at about 6:30 p.m. Monday and discovered the busted water pipe.
Five firefighters from the Abingdon Volunteer Fire Company responded to check out the scene and were able to determine that there had been a fire within the home. An electrical malfunction within the thermostat of their water heater had ignited nearby combustibles and started a fire. That fire was extinguished, however, when it became hot enough to melt a nearby pipe and cause the water to come cascading down, according to the Maryland State Fire Marshal’s Office.
There were no injuries, but an estimated $5,000 in damage to the house and $2,000 in damage to its contents.
A smoke alarm was not present in the house.