Homeowner describes fire that sent 2 firefighters to hospital

GRAND SALINE, TX (KLTV) - By Courtney Lane - bio | email
Posted by Ellen Krafve - bio | email | Twitter

GRAND SALINE, TX (KLTV) - Two firefighters are recovering from injuries they got battling an overnight house fire. The fire started in Grand Saline just after midnight in the 600 block of Patterson Street. That is just off Highway 110 and FM 17 in Grand Saline.

Early Thursday morning, crews raced to a fiery scene. John Dickerson lived at the home alone and was awoken around midnight.

"I heard an explosion," said Dickerson. "I come out and the whole back was on fire."

In desperation he grabbed his own water hose, trying to douse the flames before fire crews arrived. It wasn't an easy battle. During an interior attack, a rookie firefighter collapsed due to heat exhaustion.

"She stated that she felt woozy and next thing you know she went down," said Michael Reich, a first responder paramedic. "They went ahead and called for man down."

This firefighter, Rob Isaac, pulled her out safely but exerted a lot of energy doing so and soon after, he collapsed himself inside the burning home.

"Once you get even more of an adrenaline rush, it zaps your body even faster," said Reich.

"Four or five of them went in and come bringing two of them out," said Dickerson.

Surveying the damage later Thursday morning, Dickerson is still not sure how it started. He just knows his truck's engine was ablaze.

"I heard a loud boom and I come out to look and see if it was a car door or somebody out here and I seen the fire underneath my truck and I went back and got my pants and cell phone and when I come back I heard another boom and by then the whole underneath the carpet was burst in flames," said Dickerson.

His home may be a loss but at least everyone is safe thanks to the quick and heroic actions of these fire crews.

Those two firefighters were treated and released.

This incident comes at a controversial time in Grand Saline. The fire department's funding through the emergency services district is in jeopardy. The public is invited to attend a hearing, Monday where a petition to dissolve the funding source will either be accepted or denied. The department says they rely on this to purchase equipment and keep citizens safe.

If you would like to attend, the hearing is set for July 19th at the Chamber of Commerce building at 7 p.m.

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