Note: This story was last updated at 10 a.m. June 16.
An Oak Ridge man and woman and their dog escaped from a fire that heavily damaged a home on Wayside Road on Wednesday afternoon, authorities said.
The fire was reported at about 5:32 p.m. Wednesday.
The couple and their dog were reported to be out of the house and in a neighbor’s yard when firefighters arrived. No injuries were reported.
The fire appeared to have started at a propane grill on a back porch, although the cause hasn’t been determined, said Eric Rackard, Oak Ridge Fire Department battalion chief.
The fire quickly spread to the attic and carport of the house at 106 Wayside Road, Rackard said. There was heavy smoke and flames when firefighters arrived, and the fire extended to the front of the house through the attic and carport, Rackard said.
Pam Layne, a retired Y-12 Fire Department battalion chief who still works at Y-12, lives two homes down from the house that caught on fire.
“We heard a muffled ‘whoomp,'” Layne said. She looked out a window to see what had happened, and her husband saw smoke coming out of the home nearby.
“It was rolling,” Layne said of the very hot fire. She said it formed a fire tornado, and she could hear gas hissing.
Rackard said the fire caused heavy damage. There was visible damage to the attic, eaves, carport, porch, and siding, and part of the yard around the back porch was also burned.
Rackard said ORFD Engine 3 and Captain Charlie Elliott and Firefighter Trainee Gage Whitman laid down a 2.5-inch water hose and knocked down the fire in about five minutes.
Engine 1 and Captain Jason Benjamin and Firefighter Gary Williamson helped, Rackard said. Other fire units also responded, as did the Oak Ridge Police Department and Anderson County EMS.
Firefighters used foam to help control the fire faster.
Wayside Road is off West Outer Drive just west of North Illinois Avenue in north Oak Ridge.
More information will be added as it becomes available.
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