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Two youth help prevent fire from spreading

Two young people acted fast Monday night to prevent a fire from spreading outside a bedroom in a Brainerd home their family rents.

Brainerd Fire Chief Kevin Stunek said firefighters were called at 6:45 p.m. to a home at 1216 J. St., rented by Mary Haivala. Stunek said Haivala’s children were home alone at the time of the fire when her 12-year-old daughter smelled smoke in the bedroom when she was doing laundry. Stunek said the daughter and her 14-year-old brother left the home with their dog, cat and bird and called 911, while a neighbor tried to extinguish the fire.

Stunek said he does not encourage people to extinguish fires themselves, as people should leave it to the professionals.

The cause of the fire was not known Tuesday, Stunek said.

About a dozen firefighters responded to the scene, with assistance from Brainerd Police officers and North Ambulance. Firefighters cleared the scene within an hour.

Firefighters also responded to a call at 6:24 a.m. Tuesday to Building No. 22 at the Brainerd Regional Human Services Center to what turned out to be a false alarm.

JENNIFER STOCKINGER may be reached at or 855-5851.