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Five people are now homeless after their home at 2336 Gilsen Street was destroyed by a fire after a box fan started on fire in a bedroom early Monday morning.

Four adults and a child were sleeping at 1:17 a.m. Monday when they were woken up by a smoke alarm. Firefighters contained the fire to a bedroom on the second floor. But the smoke damaged much of what was inside the house, according to a press release by the Racine Fire Department.

The Red Cross is helping the family find shelter.

“Working smoke alarms prevented what could have been a very catastrophic fire,” the press release reads.

The estimated loss is $50,000.

Officials with the Racine Fire Department want to remind citizens to test their smoke alarms once a month.

“Every level of your home needs at least one working smoke alarm and one carbon monoxide alarm. It is suggested that every bedroom also have a smoke alarm,” according to the press release.

If anyone has any questions, please feel free to contact the Fire Prevention Bureau at (262) 635-7921 during weekdays from 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

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Denise Lockwood has an extensive background in traditional and non-traditional media. She has written for, the Milwaukee Business Journal, Milwaukee Magazine and the Kenosha News.