Couple escapes house blaze

ALBANY -- A fire erupted in a home on the 3000 block of Torrey Pines Lane Sunday causing $13,000 in damages and ruining the Super Bowl for a couple who escaped injury.

The fire started in or near a gas-fueled fireplace, homeowner Annette Oliver, 60, said.

"I heard a boom and thought it was the logs in the fireplace. My husband was trying to put the fire out with a hose," Oliver said of her husband, Roger, 69. "The fire went up to the ceiling and roof. I ran outside and called 911. When they got here, they told us to get out of the house."

Firefighters arrived at 7:23 p.m. and extinguished the fire by 7:42 p.m., said Albany Fire Department Assistant Chief Allen Cravey.

"When they (firefighters) arrived, the building was not fully involved," Cravey said. "The fire was in the ceiling and the roof, and smoke was coming out of the building."

Three pumper trucks, another truck staffed with firefighters, assorted other vehicles and an EMS ambulance responded to the emergency call, Cravey said.

"There were no injuries, and EMS always responds to an active fire on standby," Cravey said. "There were about 16 personnel at the fire."

The couple had just finished putting in new cabinets in the three-bedroom, three-bathroom home's kitchen, Annette Oliver said. They were preparing chicken wings on an outdoor grille to enjoy with the Super Bowl when the fire started in the house.

The couple is staying with family because the home is not habitable. The couple has insurance, but it probably won't cover all the damage, Oliver said.