MIDLOTHIAN – Firefighters were alerted to a structure fire by a passing motorist Wednesday, with first responders dispatched to the 6400 block of Peak View Court at 6:34 p.m.

“The first person to report it was a fellow driving down the street with his girlfriend. They saw the smoke and the flicker of flames and made a detour and came down the street in front of the house. They saw flames coming out of the door and window of the garage. He went up to the front door of the house and started pounding on it and just walked on in because it was unlocked,” Midlothian Fire Chief David Schrodt said.

“The grandmother and three kids were there and he alerted them. The grandmother had already discovered the fire about the same time he came pounding on the door and opened the door.

He got all them to come out with him and they went across the yard to a next door neighbor’s house,” he said.

The owner and his wife had left and had gone to Walmart 30 minutes before the fire was reported and had left the garage door open. When fire crews arrived the fire was involved with the front corner of the attached garage and coming out of a window; however, firefighters were able to knock the flames down quickly. The damage was contained to the garage.

“The fire involved one wall of the garage where there was stored an outdoor barbeque grill and a four-wheeler,” Schrodt said, saying the fire is believed to have started somewhere around the grill, although a cause has yet to be determined.

“It was kind of a weird unexplainable fire,” Schrodt said. “The propane bottle that was with the barbecue gill was empty, so we’re pretty sure it was not fueled by the propane. There was not anything on the wall of the garage that was all that flammable or problematic. It was almost like the cooking grease from the grill had somehow ignited and of course it spread from there.”

There were 15 firefighters on scene. The Ovilla Fire Department covered Midlothian’s station two while firefighters were on the call. The Waxahachie Fire Department was dispatched to the call but was disregarded in route. No injuries were reported from the fire, with units clearing the scene at 8 p.m.

Contact Andrew at andrew.branca@wnienws.com or 469-517-1458.