Blaze extinguished at River Haven home

Becky Vargo • Nov 11, 2018 at 3:11 PM

GRAND HAVEN TWP. — A Grand Haven Township family has temporarily lost its home after a kitchen fire early Sunday afternoon.

Nobody was injured in the fire and everyone who was home got out OK, officials said.

Firefighters responded to the home of Chris and Leslie Harris in the 13600 block of Pinewood Drive at about 12:20 p.m. on a call of fire coming out of the home’s eaves. The home is located in the River Haven Village at the intersection of Mercury Drive and 144th Avenue.

Next-door neighbor Barb Swanson said that a neighbor girl and her friend came banging on her door and said the house was on fire.

“I told them to grab my hose and put it out,” said Swanson, who also grabbed her household fire extinguisher and used it on the area of the house where flames were visible.

Firefighters also used an extinguisher and then a line off a fire truck to extinguish the fire in the kitchen, according to Capt. Shawn Schraeder of Grand Haven Township Fire-Rescue.

The fire was contained to the kitchen and there was some smoke damage in the house, Schraeder said.

The girls were able to get the family dog out of the home.

Firefighters also removed the family’s three cats, including one suffering from smoke inhalation. Firefighter Ahmad Higazi administered oxygen to the cat to combat the effect of the CO2 poisoning from the smoke. The cat was doing much better after the treatment.

All of the animals survived.

Schraeder said the cause of the fire was accidental and appears to be related to cooking. He estimated damage to the home at around $20,000, with damage to the contents at about $15,000.

Firefighters put police tape around the property and cleared the scene about an hour later.

The Grand Haven Department of Public Safety assisted at the scene.

Shortly after firefighters were called to River Haven, emergency crews were dispatched to a car-versus-house crash in the 13000 block of Green Street in Robinson Township. After arriving on the scene, officials said the car hit a sideswiped a utility pole but did not hit the house. The driver was not injured.

SPI Pharma fire Saturday night

Firefighters from Grand Haven and Grand Haven Township responded to a reported fire at SPI Pharma, 1711 Tiles Court, at 8:23 p.m. Saturday.

Initial responders reported light smoke coming from the building, but the smoke turned out to be steam, according to Grand Haven Public Safety Director Jeff Hawke.

“A steam pipe ruptured on the third floor,” Hawke said. “It activated the fire alarm and sprinkler system. There was flooding on the third floor.”

Employees were working in the building at the time and were able to safely evacuate.

Firefighters had to ventilate the steam from the building before they could determine that there was no fire.


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