February 1, 2010 (Spring Valley) – On Saturday evening, San Miguel Firefighters responded to a kitchen fire in the 600 block of Water View in Spring Valley. When crews arrived, they saw flames coming out an attic vent of the single story home.The homeowner and his 14-year-old daughter were inside at the time, and were alerted when several smoke detectors sounded. A pan on the stove super-heated, creating a flash flame which set the back splash on fire, the homeowner told firefighters.
Residents called 9-1-1 and evacuated.
“A lighting quick attack in the kitchen area and through the ceiling allowed crews to completely extinguishing the fire in about ten minutes,” San Miguel spokesman Leonard Villareal stated in a press release. “By attacking through the kitchen ceiling , firefighters were able to knock down the flames in the attic without having to cut holes in the roof. The quick response and the interior attack kept damage to a minimum.”
Preliminary dollars loss is estimated at $20,000. The homeowner suffered minor burns on his hand when he attempted to put a lid on the burning pan. The Red Cross was called to provide assistance.
According to the National Fire Prevention Association, unattended cooking is the leading cause of kitchen fires. A grease fire can spread in minutes, engulfing a home in flames, so it's important to call 911 promptly and get out.
Never put water on a grease fire, which will make it flare up. A small fire in a pan may be smothered by covering the pan with a lid, though glass lids may crack. For an oven fire, turn off oven and close door. A fire extinguisher may be used but will contaminate food.
Find more information on cooking fires at the NFPA website.