Last Saturday was a busy day for the Tallmadge Fire Department.
Firefighters responded to a burning outbuilding on North Munroe Road around 4 p.m. The building contained a motor home, two Jeeps, off road vehicles and other miscellaneous equipment. Tallmadge Fire Chief Pat Gaffney said the building and its contents, estimated at between $300,000 and $400,000, were a total loss.
Gaffney said investigators are in the process of examining the scene and for now the cause of the fire is undetermined.
Earlier that afternoon and later in the evening, firefighters responded to kitchen fires.
The first occurred close to 1:30 p.m. at an Outlook Drive residence.
According to Gaffney, the resident was baking cookies and thought she had turned the oven on, but accidently turned a surface unit on instead.
Gaffney said a plastic cover sitting atop the surface unit ignited, resulting in a fire that damaged the kitchen.
That evening, around 9:30 p.m., firefighters responded to another kitchen fire on West Howe Road.
Gaffney said after the resident turned on the stove to heat some grease to cook potatoes, they left the kitchen and the stove unattended. Another occupant in the house heard a noise and investigated, discovering the pan of grease had caught fire and ignited the kitchen cabinets.
The resident was able to extinguish the fire prior to firefighters’ arrival.
Gaffney advises residents the primary cause of house fires, according to the National Fire Protection Agency, is from cooking.
“Kitchen fires are caused by individuals who are not paying as close attention as they should be when cooking,” he noted. “Debris on the stove can catch fire easily. Grease is another common denominator when dealing with kitchen fires. A stove or oven that is not working properly can also lead to a fire. Mild fires happen often; however, the majority of fires occur when other tasks are being preformed while the individual is not concentrating on their cooking.”
Gaffney asks residents to check their smoke detectors and make sure they have a fire extinguisher available.
For more details on these fires, read Sunday’s Tallmadge Express or visit www.tallmadgeexpress.com.