Two pets die in Niles fire, home destroyedPublished 6:53pm Monday, September 30, 2013
A Niles family lost a dog, a cat and most of their belongings in a fire Monday morning in Niles Charter Township.
Michael Young, 35, his fiancée, Trisha Bonebright, and Young’s two children, Ellie, 11, and Addie, 8, were living at 213 State Line Road.
Young said the fire began in the kitchen at around 11:18 a.m. when he was heating oil in a pan on the stove to make French fries. When Young dropped the fries in, the oil exploded out of the pan and caught the kitchen on fire.
A neighbor called 911 and helped Young save one cat, but they couldn’t find another cat and dog inside. Both animals died in the fire.
No one was hurt in the fire. Young said his two kids were at school and his fiancée had just left for work.
Niles Charter Township Fire, Clay Fire and Southwestern Michigan Community Ambulance Service responded.
Gary Brovold, Niles Charter Township fire chief, said the fire was under control in less than a half an hour, although the home is a total loss.
“We arrived to a working fire,” he said. “There were flames coming out both sides of the structure and heavy smoke.”
Young said the family had been living there for three years.
“I can’t believe it man. I was going to raise my kids here,” he said.
Young advised anyone heating oil to use a real fryer and to not cook oil in a pan.
Brovold said one way to stop a grease fire is to put a lid on the container.
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