The Oak Park Fire Department is still investigating what caused a fire early Saturday that injured one firefighter at a home fire in Southeast Oak Park.
Firefighters were called to the 1100 block of South Humphrey Avenue shortly after 1:30 a.m. Saturday, said Deputy Fire Chief Kenneth Klemm. The fire started in the rear porch area of the converted two-flat, but the cause is unknown.
Kevin McCarey, who lives in the 1100 block of South Lyman Avenue, said he heard sirens around that time, but assumed they were going to the Eisenhower Expressway for an accident. Then, while he was walking down his hallway, he noticed flames that were “totally engulfing the back of the house.”
Keri Burchfield, who lives next door with her fiancé, said she heard voices and sirens before she got out of bed to see the flames. There was urgent knocking at the door, she said, and “we packed up our pets, got in our car and left.” Burchfield added if the wind had been blowing south, her house might’ve been affected. She was allowed back in around 2:20 a.m.
Once the fire was out, McCarey said he could still see spots where smaller flames were going through the roof. His wife, who had talked to another neighbor, told him two families lived there. Klemm said people had been home but got out before firefighters arrived.
Klemm said the injured firefighter was taken to Loyola Hospital with minor injuries and released later that morning. The loss was estimated at $130,000.