Firefighters rush to the rescue

The fire was out before they got there, but crews from North Whidbey Fire and Rescue still had some saving to do.

A grease fire filled a home on Westwood Place, which is off of West Beach Road, with smoke and burnt one of the occupant’s legs Friday.

North Whidbey Chief Marv Koorn said the residents were able to extinguish the flames quickly, which saved the house.

“They were cooking on the stove, and what exactly caused it to ignite, who knows,” Koorn said. “There is definite kitchen damage and appliance damage.”

Koorn said he estimates the flames and smoke caused approximately $5,000 in damage.

The home’s owner, Jeri Hill, said that her daughter, Ashley, was cooking on the stove when the oil in a pan burst in to flames. The house was home to a number of animals, which Ashley rushed outside before battling the flames, Hill said.

Ashley was able to escort four puppies outside. Hill said that two dogs, a rabbit and four cats were inside the house as well. Firefighters removed the bunny in its cage, and a firefighter also brought a small kitten named Sebastian outside to the fresh air.

Hill said that she considers herself lucky, as the worst damage was confined to a melted microwave above the stove.

“It could have caught on to the ceiling,” she said.

Once the flames erupted, Ashley threw a towel over the pan and the hot oil. But when she took the towel off, the oil splashed on to her left foot and left leg. Medics took her to Whidbey General for treatment.

“The gal did a good job with the fire extinguisher,” Koorn said.

You can reach News-Times reporter Eric Berto at

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