Grease fire fighting sends man to hospital

Published 12:00 am Monday, May 8, 2000

An Ironton man is still recovering after a weekend kitchen fire erupted in his South Ninth Street home.

Monday, May 08, 2000

An Ironton man is still recovering after a weekend kitchen fire erupted in his South Ninth Street home.

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Dean Royal, 615 S. Ninth St., attempted to fight what started as a grease fire in his kitchen late Friday night, said Ironton Fire Department inspector Jim Monte.

At about 11:38 p.m., IFD received a Lawrence County 911 emergency dispatch report of a structure fire with possible entrapment, according to Ironton Police Department records. When firefighters arrived at the scene, they were greeted by smoke and flames.

"It was a grease fire – cooking material was left on the stove," Monte said. "There was moderate damage to the kitchen area and Mr. Royal injured his knee while trying to fight the fire. He also suffered from smoke inhalation."

Royal was transported by Southeast Ohio Emergency Medical Service to Our Lady of Bellefonte Hospital’s emergency room in Russell, Ky., where he was treated and released for his injuries, Monte said.

Although minor, it is possible that Royal’s injuries could have been avoided, Monte said.

"If a resident does not have an approved fire extinguisher, the best thing to do is immediately contact the fire department or call 911 so that the fire department can be en route to the scene," Monte said.

While there are steps that can be taken in situations like Friday’s kitchen fire, when residents attempt to fight fires by themselves, accidents and fatalities can occur, he said.

"If you have baking soda, you can use that, and turning off the heat on the stove is helpful if it is safe enough to do so," he said. "But the best thing to do is just let the fire department handle it."

Picking up a burning pot or pan is never a good idea, Monte said, adding that, in some cases, it actually causes the fire to spread.

"One of the things you don’t want to do is pick up the pan and try to carry it outside," he said. "The entire pan becomes extremely hot, including the handle, and what happens is the person often will drop the pan on the way outside and spread the fire to another area."

No firefighters were injured and the blaze was contained to the kitchen area of the home, Monte said. No other injuries or damages were reported during the incident.