MIDDLETOWN, R.I. (WPRI) — Firefighters were called to a home on East Main Road in Middletown shortly after midnight on Saturday.
Thick smoke and flames were pouring from the roof. Subfreezing temperatures caused icy conditions, which made things difficult for firefighters.The Portsmouth and Navy fire departments provided mutual aid.
Middletown Fire Chief Ron Doire told Eyewitness News two men and a woman inside the home made it out safely. However, two cats were killed.
Investigators say the fire started in the kitchen, and has been ruled accidental.Doire said that it appears that the residents were using the kitchen stove to heat the home.
“Stoves are made for cooking food and not made for heating the homes,” Doire said, “and this happens unfortunately too often. When people use them for unintended purposes it starts a fire.”
The home suffered extensive fire, smoke, and water damage. The Red Cross is assisting the residents who were displaced.
Last month, Rhode Island received an additional $2.45 million in federal funds for the state’s Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program.