Man loses dog in destructive fire; among many others displaced from fires in Fresno in 2019

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- We're less than 48 hours into the new year and Fresno Fire has already extinguished about 20 fires.

Tuesday morning alone they battled three home fires leaving at least a dozen people displaced.

"I was laying in bed petting my dog and I heard this explosion," two days into the new year and Dennis Francesconi has lost nearly everything, including his dog.

"Everything i own is laying there in ashes," Francesconi said.

Tuesday his Westlake Park mobile home went up in flames.

"It filled up with smoke so fast while i was on the phone. the fire was just rapid, i could not believe it. I barely got out myself," he said.

His home wasn't the first blaze of the morning.

A house in Central Fresno was badly damaged after an attic fire.

Investigators say the cause was electrical.

"It appears to be faulty electrical wiring," said Battalion Chief William Veiga.

Later that morning a motor home was reduced to rubble. This time in Southwest Fresno.

According to firefighters the blaze was caused by a woman trying to warm up next to a candle.

She lost three of her dogs.

So far this year the Fresno Fire Department has received 192 calls.

They responded to at least five home fires.

"We run a couple thousand fires a year of all different sorts and natures, but it has been a busy year so far," said fire investigator Jay Tracy.

The first fire of the year took place at the Romain Park Neighborhood Center in Central Fresno.

Tracy says the cause appears to be arson.

"There were three porta potties that were placed outside of the building do to a vandalism incident that took place inside," he said.

According to Tracy a staff is the same this year, but an increase this summer will help boost their firefighting efforts.

As for Francesconi, his fire it's still under investigation.

He says he's thankful for the fire departments quick response.
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