On Wednesday, September 15th, a call was made to local authorities reporting a house fire on Martin Luther King Drive in Elizabethtown at approximately 10:40 pm. There was no one believed to be in the home at that time. According to the Elizabethtown Fire Chief, Anthony Norris, the fire department arrived to the scene four and a half minutes following the call, and immediately began extinguishing the fire.
Upon the fire department’s arrival, bystanders expressed that they believed one person may be in the house, so firefighters immediately began searching the residence. Upon searching, they found one male victim, who was transported by EMS and later succumbed to his injuries.
The Fire Department worked alongside four other agencies to address the situation. These include local fire departments, EMS, law, and utilities.
According to Norris, it was an accidental cooking fire.
Cooking fires are the number one cause of home fires and home injuries, according to the National Fire Prevention Association.
The NFPA has the following tips to keep in mind to prevent cooking fires.
- Be on alert! If you are sleepy or have consumed alcohol don’t use the stove or stovetop.
- Stay in the kitchen while you are frying, boiling, grilling, or broiling food. If you leave the kitchen for even a short period of time, turn off the stove.
- If you are simmering, baking, or roasting food, check it regularly, remain in the home 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.
If you have a small (grease) cooking fire and decide to fight the fire…
- On the stovetop, smother the flames by sliding a lid over the pan and turning off the burner. Leave the pan covered until it is completely cooled.
- For an oven fire, turn off the heat and keep the door closed. If you have any doubt about fighting a small fire…
- Just get out! When you leave, close the door behind you to help contain the fire.
- Call 9-1-1 or the local emergency number from outside the home.