Unwatched cooking starts house fire

00:54, Jul 13 2014

A house fire over the weekend was an unfortunate reminder of the importance of not leaving cooking unattended, says a Palmerston North firefighter.

However, station officer Bevan Clark commended the actions of the man who found the blaze, saying he helped limit the spread of the fire.

A flat on Linton St in the city suburb of Westend was damaged when a fire started in a kitchen at about 10.15pm on Friday.

Clark said firefighters arrived to find the fire had spread to the lounge and hallway of the home.

''The house wasn't fully involved but it was quite a substantial fire for a small house,'' Clark said.

''By the time we got there flames were coming out of the lounge window.''

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It was yet to be determined whether the house had a working smoke alarm.

''The they had a smoke alarm, we don't know whether it operated or not,'' Clark said.

Clark said the fire showed the importance of not leaving cooking unattended.

''The person who was home heard a bang in the kitchen,'' Clark said.

''When he made it to the kitchen it was on fire.''

Clark said once the man had discovered the fire he ''did all the right things''.

He called 111, closed off other doors in the house and ensured the pets were outside, Clark said.

Shutting the doors to the bedrooms in the house had slowed the spread of the fire and saved a lot of the occupants' belongings, Clark said.

''Shutting doors saved all their gear, they managed to salvage laptops and TVs,'' he said.

For his trouble he ended up being treated at hospital, though Clark was unsure what the man's injury was.

Firefighters were at the house for about two hours on Friday night.

Manawatu Standard