Smoke and flames consumed a Lincolnton apartment with a broken smoke detector Tuesday evening, fire officials said.
The incident occurred around 6:45 p.m. at 304 N. High Street, according to a Lincolnton Fire Department press release.
An off-duty police officer spotted the smoke and fire and immediately contacted emergency crews, Fire Chief Mitch Burgin said. As a result, firefighters were able to quickly extinguish the flames with assistance from North 321 Fire Department.
No residents were inside the apartment at the time of the blaze, but the incident has displaced them, Burgin said.
The local American Red Cross chapter is providing a place to stay for both the family of three and neighbors, whose apartment also received heavy smoke damage in the incident, the release said.
The fire originated from unattended food that had been cooking on the kitchen stove.
Fire officials suggested all residents check their smoke detectors to ensure they work properly. Anyone who needs a detector can call the Lincolnton Fire Department at (704) 736-8920. The agency keeps a number of devices on hand, which they said they secure through grants