Morning Fire Destroys Longview Home - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

12/14/06-Longview

Morning Fire Destroys Longview Home

      For the second day, a fire has left an east Texas family homeless, destroying everything they owned. This time it happened just before 6 Thursday at a Longview home in the 11-hundred block of Bertha street. 5 members of the Thomas family scrambled out of their home this morning , as the fire quickly spread throughout the house.

     "It was in the room that I was sleeping and it was like right behind my head, I woke up because it was hot, and I looked back and it was fire and I tried to get it out,  it moved from the socket to the couch then after that caught the curtains then all the way around the house" said resident Valencia Norris.

     It spread so quickly the family had only seconds to get out. Norris has two small children, and worries at their needs.

     "I'm really trying to believe it I just can't believe it" she says.

      Fire investigators believe something they've dealt with many times in the cold winter months is at the root of this fire, a space heater, and some very old wiring in a very old house.

   "With the heat demand or power demand the heaters create, worn outlets where they become loose or used over time tend to get hotter and they can catch on fire which is what looks like what happened" said Longview assistant fire marshal Brian Howell.

     They got out alive, but visibly shaken from losing everything they owned. They had lived at the home for 9 years. The red cross has put the family in a hotel for three days, while they try to rebuild their lives.

     "I'm just glad we're able to see today" says Norris.

     If you'd like to help the Thomas family you can make donations at the rollins church of Christ in Longview, at 903-753-0516.

 Bob Hallmark /bhallmark@kltv.com .

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