A Novi home is expected to be a total loss after a gas grill malfunctioned and caught the siding on fire May 11. The next morning, the fire rekindled in the attic and spread through the roof, Novi Fire Chief Jeff Johnson said.

A Novi home is expected to be a total loss after a gas grill malfunctioned and caught the siding on fire May 11. The next morning, the fire rekindled in the attic and spread through the roof, Novi Fire Chief Jeff Johnson said.

Photo by Brian Wells


Novi home expected to be total loss after 2 fires in less than a day

By: Brian Wells | Novi Note | Published May 13, 2022

 A gas grill being used on the deck of a Novi home May 11 reportedly malfunctioned and caught the siding of the house on fire before spreading to the roof, Novi Fire Chief Jeff Johnson said.

A gas grill being used on the deck of a Novi home May 11 reportedly malfunctioned and caught the siding of the house on fire before spreading to the roof, Novi Fire Chief Jeff Johnson said.

Photo provided by Novi Fire Department

 After a Novi home initially caught fire Wednesday, May 11, the fire rekindled in the attic Thursday morning, May 12, according to Novi Fire Chief Jeff Johnson.

After a Novi home initially caught fire Wednesday, May 11, the fire rekindled in the attic Thursday morning, May 12, according to Novi Fire Chief Jeff Johnson.

Photo provided by Novi Fire Department

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NOVI — A Novi home is expected to be a total loss after the Novi Fire Department responded to two fires there in less than a day.

On May 11, the Fire Department received a call at 5:26 p.m. for a structure fire in the 24000 block of East Cavendish Avenue, near 10 Mile and Novi roads.

When firefighters arrived, they found flames and heavy smoke in the back of the house, according to Novi Fire Chief Jeff Johnson. A resident of the home had been using a gas grill on the back deck when it reportedly malfunctioned and exploded, catching the siding of the home on fire and spreading up the back to the roof, Johnson said.

Everyone exited the home quickly; however, the owner sustained minor flash burns and a firefighter was not feeling well, but was checked out and cleared by paramedics on the scene, Johnson said.

The fire was reported to be out by 6:14 p.m., and crews had cleared the scene by 8:50 p.m. The Northville Fire Department had been called for mutual aid but was canceled.

The next morning, the department received a call at 6:51 a.m. for a fire at the same location. The fire appeared to have rekindled in the attic of the home, Johnson said.

When firefighters arrived, they found fire and smoke through the roof, Johnson said. He said nobody was home when the fire reignited. 

The home is believed to be a total loss and the investigation has been turned over to the city’s fire marshal, he said.

 

Fire Department shares tips for safe grilling

To ensure safe grilling this summer, the Novi Fire Department has shared several tips. 

Grills should only be used outdoors and they should be placed well away from the home, deck railings and out from under eaves and overhanging branches. Children and pets should be kept at least 3 feet away from the grill area, and it should never be left unattended. Grills should be kept clean by removing grease or fat buildup.

For charcoal grills, when using a starter fluid, use only charcoal starter fluid, and never add any other flammable liquids to the fire. The fluid should be kept out of reach of children and away from heat sources. When finished grilling, let the coals cool completely before disposing of them in a metal container.

As an alternative to starter fluid, people can use a charcoal chimney that allows the use of newspaper as fuel, or an electric charcoal starter.

When using a propane grill, the gas tank hose should be checked for leaks before the first use of each year. To check it, you can apply a light soap and water solution to the hose. If the solution bubbles, or you smell gas and there is no flame, turn off the gas tank and the grill. If the leak stops, get it serviced by a professional; however, if it does not stop, call the Fire Department.

If you smell gas while cooking, immediately step away from the grill and call the Fire Department.

When lighting the grill, always keep the lid open. If the flame goes out while cooking, turn the grill and gas off and wait at least five minutes before relighting it.

Contact Staff Writer Brian Wells at (248) 291-7637 or bwells@candgnews.com.

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