Over-Packed Home Catches Fire, Sends Cats Scurrying into Street

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OLATHE, Kan. — A massive cleanup is underway at a home that caught fire Thursday morning. Firefighters said the home was packed so full with stuff they were forced to enter the home through a window.

The fire started in the 400 block of South Cherry Street in Olathe, Kan. Firefighters fought the blaze from the back of the house where the yard was littered with bicycles, lawn mowers, old cars and other miscellaneous items.

Neighbors said no one lives in the home and that the man who owns it lives in his van at the back of the property.

In an effort to help clear the property, the city brought in a dumpster. Neighbors said when a backhoe was used to knock down the front of the house, cats and mice scurried into the street.

The cause of the fire is still under investigation, but the homeowner says that it happened when the electric company switched on the power, causing something to short-circuit.

According to the City of Olathe, the homeowner has been issued six citations regarding the state of his property since 2009.

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