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Bountiful fire destroys makeshift residence, damages cars, power lines

BOUNTIFUL — A fire caused by a space heater destroyed a makeshift living area between two apartment complexes and caused $60,000 in damage Thursday, authorities said.

The fire was reported around 7:40 a.m. at 3200 S. Orchard Drive, said South Davis Metro Fire Chief Jeff Bassett.

Crews responded to find the fire raging in a living area that was also used as a storage space and parking structure, Bassett said. Firefighters doused the flames, but not before three cars — including a mid-20th century model vehicle — were heavily damaged, he said.

A space heater was later identified as the origin of the fire.

A large amount of personal belongings were also lost in the fire and overhead power lines were damaged, according to Bassett. The living area was sandwiched between two apartment complexes, but no apartments were affected, he said.

The man living in the makeshift home was able to escape the fire and was not injured. He stayed at the scene and cooperated with fire authorities, Bassett said. Others in the area knew of his unusual living arrangement, the fire chief said.

— Ben Lockhart