UPDATE: Magnolia Firefighters Rescue Senior Citizen and Her Dog from Burning Home
MAGNOLIA, TX -- Firefighters and Fire Investigators have again been busy this week responding to 12 reported residential fires across Montgomery County. One of the most dramatic incidents unfolded early Wednesday morning when Magnolia Firefighters responded to reports that an elderly resident was trapped in her burning home in the 37200 block of Thistledown Ln. Paramedics from the Montgomery County Hospital District and
Firefighters from Magnolia Fire Station 187 were the first to arrive and were followed closely by crews from other MFD Stations and Deputies from the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office. A family member told them that he had awoke to find the home filling with smoke from a fire in the kitchen. The home was not equipped with smoke alarms and by the time he noticed the fire it was too large and the heat and smoke prevented him from reaching the other end of the home where his mother normally slept.
Firefighters from Engine 187 were met with extreme fire conditions but were able to force their way into the home and began working down the smoke filled hallway searching for the victim. Within a couple of minutes, they found her on the floor, unconscious and suffering from severe smoke inhalation. They called for assistance and began working to pull her from the home. They were met at the door by MCHD EMS and other Firefighters who moved her to the waiting Ambulance. Together they initiated life-saving procedures and immediately transported her to Memorial Hermann Hospital in the Houston Medical Center. Although she suffered significant smoke inhalation injuries, she is receiving the best possible care and barring further complications, is expected to survive. Firefighters were also able to locate and rescue her small dog from the burning home and after initial evaluation and treatment on scene, a neighbor is caring for the dog until the victim can recover.
Fire Investigators from the Montgomery County Fire Marshal’s Office are conducting an investigation into the cause and origin of this fire, and have narrowed their focus to an area of the kitchen where there were two refrigerators. The fire appeared to have originated in this area and Investigators will be continuing their investigation and analysis of the fire scene evidence in an effort to further isolate the cause of this fire.
Across the nation, the number of home fires start to rise each year during the holidays with more fires occurring in December, January, and February than any other time of the year. This year has been no exception, as County Firefighters have now responded to over 50 reported structure fires this month.
Magnolia Fire Chief Gary Vincent, while praising the efforts of everyone involved, remarked that residents can take steps themselves to keep their families safe. Simply installing smoke alarms in every bedroom and hallway and regularly testing them can cut your chances of dying in a home fire in half.
Chief Vincent encourages residents to seek assistance from their local fire station if they do not have working smoke alarms. Operation “Get Alarmed Montgomery County” is a county-wide fire safety initiative between all County Fire Departments and both the City of Conroe and County Fire Marshals, offering free smoke alarms funded by donations from the community. Under the program, homeowners that need assistance can contact their local fire station and schedule a home visit. Firefighters will come to their home and install new long life smoke alarms in every bedroom, sleeping area, and adjoining hallway at no cost.
Under State Law, landlords are required to install smoke alarms in all rental homes, and then the tenants are responsible for testing them and replacing batteries as needed. If you rent your home, mobile home, RV or apartment and don’t have smoke alarms, notify your landlord in writing and request they be installed within 7 days as required by the Texas Property Code.