Portland Fire and Rescue responded last night, November 16th, to reports of a residential fire at 4720 SE 72nd Avenue. Initial reports were of a fire caused by aerosol spray paint cans being placed into a conventional cooking oven in an attempt to warm them for use in cool weather. Truck 25 arrived less than five minutes after the call was dispatched; though no fire or smoke were showing from the exterior of the home, a team of firefighters entered to investigate. The occupant of the home made contact with exterior crews and stated that a fire extinguisher was used on the fire prior to exiting the structure.
Interior firefighters discovered no active fire; however, investigation confirmed placement of the paint cans into the oven and that several of the aerosol paint cans had exploded. A phenomenon known to firefighters as a BLEVE, or Boiling Liquid Expanding Vapor Explosion, caused one of the paint cans to rupture with force adequate to propel the paint can from the partially opened oven, through the ceiling and into the attic crawl space. A subsequent explosion occurred inside of the oven igniting a fire that damaged the kitchen. Firefighters located the projectile paint can in the attic and extinguished the smoldering debris to prevent any further damage.
Fortunately no injuries were caused by the explosions, projectile paint can, or resulting fire. Firefighters recalled the incident at 17:14. Crews from Station 25 remained on scene for a short time following the recall to complete overhaul of affected areas within the structure.
Portland Fire and Rescue reminds everybody that while commonly available, products stored under pressure can pose a serious danger when exposed to any heat source or flame. Users of such products must follow all printed safety warnings, labels, and directions. Only use these products in accordance with their intended purpose.
No damage estimates are available at this time.
Fire Dispatched: 17:06
First Crews Arrive: 17:11
Fire Recalled: 17:14
55 SW Ash Street, Portland, OR 97204