Woman suffers burn injuries in flash fire


WOODSTOCK–An 84-year-old female suffered burn injuries in a momentary “flash fire” at her home on the morning of Dec. 24.

Around 8:35 a.m., the Shenandoah County Department of Emergency Communications received a medical alert activation from 41 Saumsville Road south of Maurertown. When 911 dispatchers called back, the resident told them she’d been burned while preparing to cook on her kitchen stove.

Responders found the woman in the house, awake and oriented at the kitchen table. She told them that she had been preparing to cook on the gas stove. When she turned it on, it didn’t light until later when there was a flash fire, which caught the woman’s clothing on fire.

Emergency medical units requested a helicopter to fly the woman to the hospital, but none were available due to weather. As a result, the ambulance took the woman to Rockingham Memorial Hospital. Her burns resulted in serious injuries.

The Shenandoah County Fire Marshal’s investigation determined the fire as accidental with the cause coming from the operation of the gas stove that resulted in a flash fire. There was no significant fire or smoke damage to the house.

Fire and rescue crews responded from Woodstock Fire Department, Toms Brook Volunteer Fire Department, Strasburg Fire Department, Mount Jackson Rescue and Fire Department, and Shenandoah County Department of Fire and Rescue.