Cooking oil fire extinguished by sprinkler

Fire crews were called to a 30-unit apartment building on Edward and Spadina on Thursday evening for a cooking oil fire.

Some downtown apartment dwellers are “lucky” a sprinkler went off and doused a fire that flared in a pot of cooking oil, say Chilliwack Fire Department officials.

Crews were called to the 30-unit apartment building on Edward and Spadina on Thursday evening.

Fire crews shut off the sprinkler, ventilated the apartment and began loss control operations.

The resident had put a pot of oil on ‘high’ to cook some wings, and had forgotten about it until he noticed the oil had ignited, said assistant fire chief Ian Josephson.

“He grabbed the pot and moved it to the sink but it flared up when he threw flour on the fire. Fortunately the sprinkler went off, allowing the male to escape unharmed.”

The apartment dweller told crews he had wanted to walk the pot of oil out of the building. But the pot was too hot handle. Throwing flour on it, however, is not the best idea in a panic situation, since the flour tends to ignite. Throwing a lid on top is better than trying to move it.

“That’s how people end up in the burn unit when that burn oil gets splashed back.”

There were no firefighter injuries, but there was minor smoke and water damage to the apartment and adjacent units, temporarily displacing a few of the residents.

“Chilliwack Fire Department would like to remind the public to be careful in the kitchen. If a fire ignites in a pot or pan do not try to remove it from the stove but slide a lid over the fire and turn off the element.”

For more go to www.chilliwack.com/fire.