GASTONIA, N.C. -- Gastonia firefighters responded to a structure fire late Saturday evening.

At 11:23 p.m, firefighters responded to a two-story apartment complex, with smoke and flames visible from the structure at the Pineview Lane Apartments in Gastonia.

Firefighters entered the complex and encountered heavy fire in one of the apartment units.

The fire was extinguished in approximately 15 minutes.

One occupant of the apartment was home at the time the fire started but was able to escape the complex because of working fire alarms.

A firefighter, later identified as Loren Ward was injured and transported to Caromont Regional Medical Center.

CT scans showed Ward suffered from a brain aneurysm. Ward was in surgery Sunday, according to firefighters.

The fire was started by food left unattended while cooking in an oven.

Here are some tips to preventing kitchen fires from the Gastonia Fire Department:

1. Always stay in the kitchen while baking, frying, grilling, or broiling food. If you have to leave the kitchen for even a short period of time, turn off the stove.

2. When simmering, baking, roasting, or boiling food, check it regularly, remain in the home while food is cooking, and use a timer to remind you that you are cooking.

3. Keep anything that can catch fire such as oven mitts, wooden utensils, food packaging, towels or curtains away from the stove top.