Damage caused by a cooking fire, inside of a duplex located at 405 Edward St. in Durham. Battalion Chief Jeff Roberts Courtesy of the Durham Fire Department
Damage caused by a cooking fire, inside of a duplex located at 405 Edward St. in Durham. Battalion Chief Jeff Roberts Courtesy of the Durham Fire Department

Durham County

Pan catches fire, cook tries to throw out pan. It doesn’t work. Flames torch kitchen

By Colin Warren-Hicks

cwarrenhicks@heraldsun.com

March 04, 2018 05:43 PM

DURHAM

A small cooking fire ended up growing and burning much of the intererior of a Sunday, displacing two people – one of them a child.

The Durham Fire Department was dispatched to the blaze at 405 Edward St. at 12:41 p.m. Sunday, said Deputy Chief Chris Iannuzzi, and found light smoke coming from the one-story duplex.

Firefighters brought the fire under control in less than five minutes, Iannuzzi said, but it had already caused heavy damage to the home’s kitchen and porch. Smoke damaged the rest of the house as well.

IIannuzzi said the fire began when flames flared up in pan while a female occupant of the duplex was cooking in the kitchen. She attempted to throw the blazing pan out of the house while it was burning, Iannuzzi said. He said the fire spread to other household items while she was attempting to get rid of the pan and ended up burning her hand. She was treated for a minor burn by Durham County EMS.

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Fire damage inside of a duplex located at 405 Edward St. in Durham.
Battalion Chief Jeff Roberts Courtesy of the Durham Fire Department

The firefighters remained on the scene for about an hour.

Iannuzzi took advantage of the incident to give some advice on fire safety involving cooking.

He said cooking fires can cause much destruction in a short period of time and if a pan flares up while cooking, someone should carefully cover the flames with a lid or cookie sheet to extinguish them. “Do NOT try to carry a burning pan out of the house,” Iannuzzi wrote in an email.

Iannuzzi said the American Red Cross were assisting the woman and child displaced by the fire.

Colin Warren-Hicks: 919-419-6636, @CWarrenHicks