Firefighters on scene of a kitchen fire at 654 Viscount Road, May 15, 2024. Photo provided by the London Fire Department.Firefighters on scene of a kitchen fire at 654 Viscount Road, May 15, 2024. Photo provided by the London Fire Department.
London

Family displaced by $150K kitchen fire

Working smoke alarms alerted a sleeping family to a serious fire burning inside their southwest London home.

The blaze broke out in the kitchen of one of the units in the multi-unit building at 654 Viscount Road, south of Commissioners Road around 1:30 a.m. on Wednesday. When firefighters arrived, smoke and flames were visible from outside of the home.

"There was no one cooking at the time [the fire ignited]. The family was in bed and were alerted to the fire by a smoke alarm," said London Fire Department Platoon Chief Colin Shewell. "Initially the family tried to put the fire out and then they made the decision to get outside and wait for fire crews - a very good decision that made it easy for our crews to do a rapid entry and put the fire out."

The fire was extinguished quickly and smoke was ventilated from the building.

No injuries were reported and damage is estimated at $150,000, Shewell said.

While the other residents of the building were allowed to return to their homes, the family in the affected unit has been displaced. The Red Cross has provided them with temporary shelter.

The fire was originally thought to have been sparked by an air fryer, but it has since been determined it did not play a role in the blaze.

"We know the area of origin is near the stovetop. We will be investigating further today. The fire has been determined as accidental, under investigation. It is not considered suspicious," said Shewell.

He added that as a safety precaution, it is always a good idea to keep combustibles and flammable items away from cooking areas.

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