Fire investigators determined the fire was accidental and was caused by “an electrical anomaly involving the underground natural gas feed within the building,” the Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department reported May 27. Damage is estimated at $500,000. One occupant was transported to a hospital for a non-life threatening injury unrelated to the fire.
When firefighters from Fairfax County and Arlington County arrived at about 9:20 p.m., they encountered fire coming from an outside transformer with fire extending into the first floor electrical room of the four-story building. Firefighters used hose lines to control and keep in check the gas-fed fire until all gas and electrical utilities could be controlled.
Firefighters went door-to-door to help residents get out of the building. Residents were sheltered in a nearby church and cafeteria at 550 N. Madison Ave. and were assisted by the Office of Emergency Management, Red Cross, and building management personnel. Power to the Lockwood House was restored Sunday evening, allowing all residents to return.