ST. PAUL (WCCO) — Some St. Paul residents are safe after a fire engulfed their kitchen.

It happened around 5 a.m. Tuesday near the intersection of Rice and Arlington at the Lamplighter Apartment Complex.

A woman, who did not want to be named, said she was sleeping when the incident occurred.

NewsRadio 830 WCCO’s Courtney King Reports

“Me and my girlfriend were sleeping when we heard our two roommates screaming. Somebody was cooking on the stove,” she explained.

She said her roommates were cooking french fries, turned off the stove when they were done and then left the room. That’s when they heard a loud pop.

“We woke up and heard the fire alarms and screaming. So we came out and the whole kitchen was just engulfed in flames.”

Everyone in the residence made it out of the apartment OK and with no injuries. The woman said the whole thing was really scary.

“I ran out and I seen the fire and ran back to the room and woke my girlfriend up. We got out and called 911.”

According to the roommates, the fire was very quick and completely destroyed the kitchen and living room. The woman said some of their personal belongings were salvageable, but the rest of the unit suffered heavy smoke damage.

“There was smoke damage to our clothes but it’s better than not having it,” she said.

Firefighters said the fire started on the second floor, likely on a stove, and spread to the third floor before they got it out. Crews had to use ladders to rescue people from the balconies of an apartment building.

A few people inhaled a lot of smoke but did not have to go to the hospital.

The Red Cross is assisting four adults and one infant following the fire.

The exact cause is under investigation.

Comments (6)
  1. Ace says:

    That’s one reason why I never cook, too much work and too dangerous

  2. jackactionhero says:

    Why do people say “I seen”. I mean really.

  3. Common sense...NOT says:

    Cooking french fries at 5am???? Nothing better to do at that time….like sleep? Or getting ready for work??

  4. Matt says:

    sounds like they put water into the hot oil…they don’t sound very smart, plus who eats french fries at 5am?

  5. sTPAUL says:

    HEHEHE, LOL, some ppl only know Frence Fires and not much nothing else…

    Or this person could be a sleep walker, thinking, he/she have turned off the stove…land left the greasy fry pan on the stove….

  6. peach says:

    We were the ones who had to leave off the balcony. These fools who started the fire left the building and did not alert the landlords or any of the tenants. We woke up just in time to get out when we heard our smoke alarm. We could not leave through the front door because their door was on fire. Our cats were left in the building because we could not reenter due to the smoke. Fortunately, they were ok. These were the worst neighbors ever. One evening their baby pooped in the tub and instead of cleaning it up they shoved it down the drain. It backed up into our tub and we had to have a hole drilled into our wall to clean the pipes right during our daughter’s bed time! They then knocked on our door because they were mad about the noise! The nerve! Another night they flooded the apartment below them. The last impact they had on the building was to burn down 3 apartments and cause significant smoke damage to the whole building. The story they told the fire fighters said nothing about turning off the stove. They were cooking the fries and left the room to go to the bathroom and came back and their was a fire in the kitchen. I’m not surprised they couldn’t figure out how to put out a grease fire.

    The thing that makes this so bad for us is that we have a daughter with special needs. She has had a hard time recovering and going back to school. Normal life is already difficult for her without this added stress. I hope they realize what they’ve done and how they negatively affected a lot of lives! She also cannot talk so if she had been lost in the smoke it would have been hard to find her and we would have held them personally responsible for anything that happened to her. We realized after we signed a lease that this is Section 8 housing. I’m horrified that my tax dollars go towards housing people like this. They don’t deserve any help. They have no respect for the people around them. Also, we got out of the building at 4 AM, so I’m guessing the fire started more around 3:30 AM.

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