House in west Wichita catches fire; elderly woman hospitalized

A 76-year-old woman awoke to smoke in her west Wichita house early this morning, tried to put the fire out and finally was forced to leave and call 911, officials said.

The fire was reported at 5:43 a.m. at 9948 West Briarwood, which is just southeast of 13th Street and Maize Road, a Sedgwick County dispatch supervisor said.

The fire was caused by an electrical short, fire Capt. Stuart Bevis said, and caused an estimated $20,000 damage to the house and its contents. The woman was taken to Via Christi Hospital on St. Francis for treatment of smoke inhalation.