A Pequot Lakes man suffered second-degree burns to his hands when a fire started in the kitchen of his Pequot Lakes home Monday, April 8, totaling one apartment and leaving another with water damage.
Pequot Lakes Fire Chief Tom Nelson said the cause of fire was accidental. The fire started at 2:30 a.m. when the renter of one upper level apartment, Richard Aase, briefly left his cooking unattended, Nelson said. Aase attempted to extinguish the fire with a fire extinguisher and sustained second-degree burns to his hands.
The apartment complex at 30551 Rae Ave., owned by Brian Larson, includes four apartments — two upstairs and two downstairs. Nelson said Aase’s apartment and the one below were separated from the other two vacant apartments by a firewall. This kept the fire and water damage from spreading.
There was an unnamed resident in the apartment below Aase’s, but she was evacuated safely before firefighters arrived. Aase was transported to the hospital for burns.
Fire departments were called from Nisswa, Ideal Township and Crosslake for mutual aid. firefighters were able to extinguish the fire within an hour using approximately 2,000 gallons of water.
Nelson said in cases like this it is better to call 911 right away rather than doing so after trying to put the fire out on your own.