A kitchen fire at the Canal Park apartments was extinguished before it spread early Saturday by firefighters' quick response to an automatic alarm triggered by smoke detectors in the Westport Housing Authority complex.

The blaze at 5 Canal St. was reported about 2 a.m. to the Fire Department's dispatch center when an automatic alarm indicated detectors were activated in unit 8G. As firefighters headed to the scene, an occupant of the apartment called to report fire was burning on top of the kitchen stove.

The first firefighters arriving on the scene reported no fire visible at the apartment complex, and went to unit 8G to investigate. The door to the apartment was closed and locked, according to the report, and just as firefighters were preparing to force entry, the occupant opened the door and heavy smoke billowed out.

As police helped the apartment resident to safety, firefighters searched for any other occupants of the unit and found none.

The blaze was quickly doused, confining damage to the unit's kitchen. Additional smoke damage was caused to the apartment across the hallway from apartment 8G, firefighters said.

The resident of 8G was taken to Norwalk Hospital by Westport EMS personnel for treatment of suspected smoke inhalation.

A total of 22 firefighters were dispatched to the scene of the fire, which was reported under control at 2:37 a.m. The last fire unit cleared the scene at 3:47 a.m., firefighters said.

Assisting Westport firefighters was the Wilton Fire Department's rapid-intervention team, while Fairfield firefighters provided backup coverage for the town based at fire headquarters.

The cause of the fire is being investigated by the Fire Marshal's Office.