By Leslie Hynes, Snohomish County Fire District 1 Public Information Officer.
A pan of oil heating on a stovetop ignited and sparked a fire that caused $180,000 damage and displaced four residents from a duplex south of Everett Thursday afternoon, July 28, 2016.
A duplex resident called 911 around 2 pm to report the fire in the two-story building in the 300 block of 107th Street SW in unincorporated Everett.
Half the building, a large tree and a car were engulfed in flames when the first firefighters arrived.
Two men safely exited the building – one resident from the unit where the fire started and one from the neighboring unit.
About 30 firefighters from Fire Districts 1 and 7, Everett and Mukilteo responded and had the fire under control in 30 minutes. No one was injured.
The duplex unit where the fire started is a total loss. The fire burned in the attic above the neighboring unit.
Firefighters had to pull the ceiling down in the second-floor rooms to get at the flames. Both units are uninhabitable.
Red Cross is assisting four residents -- a man and his adult son who lived in the unit where the fire started and a man and woman who lived in the neighboring unit. All are renters and do not have insurance.
Cooking fires are the leading cause of home fires and injuries, according to the National Fire Protection Association.
Fire District 1 offers these tips to prevent cooking fires:
- Stay in the kitchen while you are frying, grilling, boiling or broiling food.
- If you are simmering, baking or roasting food, check it regularly, remain in the kitchen while food is cooking, and use a timer to remind you that you are cooking.
- Always cook with a lid beside your pan. If you have a fire, slide the lid over the pan and turn off the burner. Do not remove the cover because the fire could start again. Let the pan cool for a long time. Never throw water or use a fire extinguisher on the fire.
- If the fire does not go out or you don’t feel comfortable sliding a lid over the pan, get everyone out of your home. Call the fire department from outside.
- Keep anything that can catch fire — oven mitts, wooden utensils, food packaging, towels or curtains — away from your stovetop.
- If you are sleepy or have consumed alcohol don’t use the stove or stovetop.