A pot left on a hot stove element is blamed for causing $100,000 in damage to a home in Chatham.

Chatham-Kent Fire and Emergency Services says they responded to a call in the 300 block of Campus Parkway around 5:30 p.m. on Tuesday.

Officials say the homeowner returned to her residence and found her house full of thick black smoke.

“She quickly closed the door, went to a safe location and called 911, “explains Assistant Chief Chris Case. “She did all the right things. A pot had been left on the stove, such an easy thing to be distracted and do this, but the consequences can be tragic.”

Firefighters from stations #1 and #2 were able to quickly extinguish the flames.

No one was hurt.

“Fires in the home are devastating at any time of the year, the damage from the fire, the smell of smoke and the water used to fight the blaze make a terrible mess,” Case continues. “Fires during the holiday season are particularly heart-breaking.”

“We are relieved that nobody was hurt in this fire, but it will be a difficult time for this family to get their home back to how it was and to enjoy the festive period,” adds Case.

Firefighters returned to the area of Campus Parkway Wednesday, going door-to-door to check alarms, discuss home escape planning and remind the community about safe cooking, which is the number one cause of residential fires in Ontario.  

“Stove top fires are the most common type of cooking fire,” says Whitney Burk, Public Educator. “We have a lot on our minds during the holidays and it is easy to get sidetracked, thus we are asking everyone to stay in the kitchen when cooking and always double check that the stove and oven are shut off.”