TYLER, Texas (KLTV) - A house burned in Tyler on Wednesday afternoon.
“I left the restaurant and came out and saw fire coming out of the windows, I thought no one was home,” said Kenny Hampton, a witness who ran to the home to see if he could help. “I ran over to the house and saw the lady running out. I helped her out of the gate. She wanted to go back in and move the car and I wouldn’t let her go back in because it was a risk.”
Crews were to called to the scene of the structure in the 1710 block of Summit Avenue at about 2:45 p.m. Wednesday. A man told fire officials that while he was at work in Longview, his wife was home and heard a loud boom upstairs. She went upstairs to check it out, saw lots of smoke, and called for help.
“We’re always concerned when there’s fire above us, that is the most dangerous,” said Tyler Deputy Fire Marshal Randy Lee. “Initially, once they were able to get to the second floor, the big problem was we had fire in the attic. At that point the attic was totally involved. Crews were unable to get through the ceiling because of heavy timber; at that point the chief did back them out, we went defensive for a bit.”
Firefighters said that there was heavy fire in the attic. They battled it by cutting through the walls with a chainsaw and pulling hose lines through the windows.
Lee said it’s important for witnesses or neighbors to check in on others in the event of a fire.
“It’s so important in this day and age, everyone is so busy and concentrating on their own things and everybody has a time trying to meet and get there but any time you have a situation like that — a good samaritan or neighbor is worth gold — to make contact and make sure everyone is out of the structure," said Lee. “Maybe they weren’t notified, maybe they don’t know there’s fire above. Anytime you can assist a fellow citizen, a fellow human being, we encourage you to do that.”
The fire is under control as of 4 p.m.
The woman received medical attention for an anxiety attack, officials said.
The witness who made sure she was okay said he’s just glad she made it out safely.
“We’re just blessed that she survived that one day before Thanksgiving,” said Hampton. “Just blessed she survived it.”
According to Paul Findley with the Tyler Fire Department, when crews arrived they found heavy fire coming from the second floor of a two-story home.
Findley reported five engines, a ladder, a battalion chief, and an investigator are currently on scene.