Unattended cooking cause of house fire

Michele Anderson, Public Safety Communications Manager

Monday, August 13, 2018 at 12:57 p.m.

Fire investigators with the Spokane Fire Department's Special Investigation Unit say unattended cooking caused a house fire in the 200 block of E. Longfellow Ave. yesterday.

At approximately 6:11 p.m., the Spokane Fire Department responded to a report of a house. All occupants were reported to be out of the home before fire department crews arrived on scene. Multiple pets including two dogs, five cats and two lizards were still inside the residence, but firefighters were able to removal all of the pets from the residence unharmed.

Eight residents were displaced as the fire caused extensive damage to the living area and attic. The American Red Cross assisted the residents with housing.

Important safety tips to follow when cooking:

  • 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.
  • Keep anything that can catch fire – oven mitts, wooden utensils, food packaging, towels or curtains – away from your stovetop.
  • Be on alert! If you are sleepy or have consumed alcohol don’t use the stove or stovetop

If you have a cooking fire:

  • Get out! When you leave, close the door behind you to help contain the fire.
  • Call 9-1-1 after you leave.
  • Keep a lid nearby when you’re cooking to smother small grease fires. Smother the fire by sliding the lid over the pan and turn off the stovetop. Leave the pan covered until it is completely cooled.
  • For an oven fire turn off the heat and keep the door closed.