Hot stove ignites big house fire

Published: Jun. 19, 2014 at 7:32 PM EDT|Updated: Jun. 24, 2014 at 7:32 PM EDT
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Albany fire investigator Sam Harris
Albany fire investigator Sam Harris
Pat Brinson, neighbor
Pat Brinson, neighbor

ALBANY, GA (WALB) - It didn't take long for Albany fire investigator Sam Harris to find what ignited the blaze that gutted this home on Elton street.

"It was a stove fire, where an eye was left on and thus caused the fire," said Harris.

Carlene Kemp told firefighters she started cooking french fries and forgot about them when she left her home around 11:00 Wednesday night. She was staying at a friends house for care after undergoing a recent surgery.

When firefighters arrived a few hours later, at one in the morning, they found these flames devouring the roof. Kemp watched in tears, as they battled the flames.

"We did a defensive tight because the attic was filled with Smoke and fire and it took us approximately an hour and a half to being the fire under control," said Clarence Haynes, Battalion Chief.

Kemp's neighbors were startled awake by the fire trucks as the smoke and flames filled the sky.   "There were lights, red lights, going around the walls in the bedroom . So, I got up and opened the blinds and saw the flames. But they were just in the back of the house, not in the front. They were a good twice as high as the roof lines," said Pat Brinson, neighbor.

"Now the roof is left caved in, ash coats everything and nothing appears to be left salvageable," said Brinson.   "I know she'll be okay but it's just losing everything that is just so hard."

Brinson, who lives just across the street, says she's just happy her neighbor wasn't injured.   "Absolutely, everything else can be replaced," said Brinson.   For now Kemp will be staying with friends, possibly until she finds a new home.

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