BAREFOOT BAY, Florida -- Brevard County Fire Rescue (BCFR) crews were dispatched at 6:26 p.m. for a reported structure fire in the 800 block of Sapodilla Drive in Barefoot Bay, Florida.
Firefighters from Station 86 were first to arrive at 6:32 p.m. and reported moderate smoke coming from the front door of the home. Firefighters stretched a hand line through the front door of the home and located a working fire located in the kitchen of the double-wide, manufactured home. The home was occupied by a single resident when the fire began.
The resident told firefighters that the fire began when a pan of grease he was cooking with suddenly ignited. He told officials that he immediately called 911, then attempted to extinguish the fire with a garden hose while waiting for assistance. According the resident, the fire "exploded" as soon as he applied water to it and the fire quickly spread to the surrounding cabinets. He was able to safely evacuate the home as fire crews arrived and was evaluated at the scene but was uninjured and refused transport to a local hospital for further evaluation.
Firefighters were able to confine the fire to the kitchen area of the home. Damages are estimated at $20,000. It is unclear whether the home and its contents are insured. The resident declined assistance from the American Red Cross.
The best way to prevent cooking fires is to never leave cooking food unattended, not even for a few seconds. Grease fires burn very hot and water should not be applied in an effort to extinguish them as the water will vaporize causing the fire to spread very quickly, as it did in this case. In case of a grease fire, BCFR recommends you immediately exit the home, call 911 for assistance, and remain outside until fire crews arrive.
If the grease fire is small- and it is safe to do so- experts recommend that you turn off the stove to remove the heat source. Use a lid or cookie sheet to cover the fire and smother it. Wait until the fire is out and the pan cools completely before attempting to touch it or move it. Never attempt to carry hot grease. Dial 911 immediately if you are afraid or are unsure of what to do.
Unattending cooking fires are a primary cause of home fires throughout the United States but are the leading cause of fires on Thanksgiving Day. BCFR invites you to visit our website at www.brevardfire.com for cooking tips that you can use this season to ensure that your holiday is not only happy, but safe as well.