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Scott Street fire displaces dogs, six people

Annie Zelm • Jan 15, 2012 at 2:58 PM

A grease fire that erupted in a Scott Street kitchen left six people shivering outside Saturday night.

The residents all made it out safely, along with several dogs and a tropical bird, but firefighters had to use thermal-imaging cameras to find a small Pomeranian still hiding inside.

Devin Peak, 20, said he and a friend were trying to make French fries when the grease they were using burst into flames. The fire grew quickly, shooting up the walls to the attic of the single-story home at 421 Scott St.

They tried to smother the fire themselves, then called for help.

"We couldn't get it on time," said Peak, who rents the home with his girlfriend, mother, grandmother and two friends.

The fire department received the call at 8:35 p.m., and 15 firefighters from three stations arrived on the scene a few minutes later.

They subdued the flames within about 20 minutes, Capt. Brian Cowie said.

"It did some pretty good damage to the attic and kitchen area," he said.

Firefighters stayed at the scene until just after 10 p.m. to secure the area and clean up a pile of debris from the attic.

Cowie estimated the damage at about $20,000, with most of it contained to the kitchen and attic.

The Firelands chapter of the American Red Cross arranged a place for the residents to stay while the home is repaired, which is expected to take at least a few weeks.

A strong odor of smoke lingered on the street long after the fire was out.

Neighbor Shane Bellflower, 38, said he was sitting in his living room with his family when his wife saw the flashing lights of several fire trucks.

"She came out and saw flames shooting up," he said. "But it was pretty much under control when I got out there."

The home is owned by Donald and Terri Lombardy, of Marblehead, according to the Erie County auditor's website. It was last appraised at $43,000 in 2009.

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