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Clumsy teen’s eyelash curling attempt sets house on fire

A fire broke out in an apartment building when a teenager tried to heat a toothpick with a lighter to curl her eyelashes, firefighters said Thursday.

The girl, 14 years old, tried to put out the flames with perfume, but the alcohol it contained only made the flames bigger.

(Photo courtesy of the Yangju Fire Station)
(Photo courtesy of the Yangju Fire Station)

According to the Yangju Fire Station, the incident occurred at home on the ninth floor of an apartment complex in Yangju, Gyeonggi Province, around midnight. It was extinguished in about 25 minutes by firefighters with no major casualties reported.

A 62-year-old woman living upstairs was taken to hospital suffering from smoke inhalation, and dozens of residents evacuated the building. About 75 million won ($67,000) of property damage was reported.

Local police said the girl, a middle school student, appeared to have accidentally started the fire. The flames first started when the toothpick fell on cotton pads on the dressing table and grew into a blazing fire when she poured perfume on it, police said, based on their questioning of the teen.

“The student who caused the fire is unlikely to face punishment, even if she is convicted, because she is a minor,” said a police official.

By Byun Hee-jin (hjbandi9@heraldcorp.com)
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