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Two floors evacuated after small fire at senior care facility

One person was sent to hospital for observation after a small cooking fire caused the evacuation of two floors at the Sister Leila Greco Apartments.
Sister Leila Greco Fire
Two floors were evacuated at the Sister Leila Greco Apartment after a small cooking fire on the fifth floor. (Doug Diaczuk,

THUNDER BAY - Residents at a senior care facility received quite a scare when two floors of their apartment complex were evacuated following a small fire.

Just after 1 p.m. on Monday, Thunder Bay Fire Rescue crews were called to reports of a fire at the Sister Leila Greco Apartments. Upon arrival, a second alarm was called when crews discovered a large amount of smoke on the fifth floor that had spread to the sixth floor.

After speaking with staff, it was determined that a small fire started in a pot on a stove in one of the apartments. The fire was quickly extinguished by staff and the resident evacuated from the suite.

However, because of the large amount of smoke, residents on the fifth and sixth floors were evacuated to the fourth floor.

“Cooking incidents do produce a lot of smoke, and it's toxic smoke,” said Thunder Bay Fire Rescue platoon chief, Kelly Patterson. “It’s not just burnt food, it’s the Teflon on the pan, the paint on the stove, the paint on the pan or pot. It’s actually really bad smoke.”

Paramedics treated residents on scene and one person was taken to hospital for further observation.

Patterson said the building was closed while fire crews ventilated the building, which took approximately 40 minutes because of the building’s size. The facility has been reopened and all residents returned to their apartments.