Unattended Grease Blamed for House Fire

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BRYAN, Texas A grease fire is blamed for a house fire that left a single mother of three without a home.

The fire broke out at a duplex home on Pecan Ridge near Boonville in Bryan Wednesday night.

Gerald Burnett with the Bryan Fire Department said the mother, who was renting the home, was cooking dinner for her children with a pan of grease on the stove.

"And realized they needed to go to the store and pick up some other things. They went to the store, and the rest is history," said Burnett.

Fire crews were able to quickly knock out the flames. The fire severely damaged the kitchen and the roof above, and sent smoke throughout the home. The smoke also managed to find its way through the attic and into a neighbor's adjoining home. The neighbor wasn't home at the time.

Burnett said when the mother returned home, she knew right away what happened.

"The residents showed up on scene while we were cleaning up, and we were able to get to the bottom of what happened."

The mother said she knew she'd made a bad decision.

"They felt quite foolish," said Burnett. "As anyone would."

Burnett said it's never a good idea to leave a stove unattended.

"Pay attention. That's the number one thing," said Burnett. "Make sure that when you have the stove on, you're with it. And when you walk away from it, you're turning it off."

The American Red Cross has offered temporary assistance to the family.