MONROE, CT — A Monroe Volunteer Fire Department engine crew was at a preschool Thursday morning about to teach the children how to prevent fires when the program was cut short after they got the call that a fire had broken out on Walnut Street.
And what reportedly caused the fire – cooking on a stove – is one of those situations that firefighters have long been warning residents about, especially this month, as it is the leading cause of house fires, according to a post on the department’s Facebook page.
About 9:40 a.m. Thursday morning the crew was at the preschool when they had to leave to respond to the fire on the stove that had gotten “out of hand.” Because they were nearby, it only took about four minutes to get to the house, where they encountered the structure fire, according to the department.
Crews from the Monroe, Stevenson and Stepney volunteer fire departments responded to the call, and crews from the Shelton Fire Department covered the station on Route 110 while they were out, according to the post.
It took about 10 minutes for the firefighters to put the fire out and more than an hour to ventilate the house. A number of people lived there and were able to escape, according to the department, as well as their dogs. The fire damaged the kitchen but the entire house suffered smoke and heat damage and is not habitable. The Red Cross is assisting the residents to find temporary housing, according to the post.
“As we have been emphasizing this month, cooking fires are consistently the leading cause of United States house fires and can quickly escalate,” the department posted. “Attending to stove top cooking, keeping combustibles off of and away from the stovetop, keeping a pan lid nearby and having working smoke alarms – as was the case today – are steps everyone should take.”
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