Pooch saves resident from ‘careless-smoking’ house fire

You’ll see why this lady has yet another reason to love her little dog …

Firefighters head back inside the residence to make sure no live embers linger. PF&R photo

By David F. Ashton
Reports of an early morning house fire sent Portland Fire & Rescue (PF&R) firefighters from Powellhurst Station 29 at 7:21 a.m. on March 20 – heading for 13434 SE Harold Street.

Arriving three minutes after the call, crews found smoke pouring out the front of the home. Even more startling, they learned a blind man was possibly trapped inside.

“Within two minutes after they arrived, firefighters located the man inside, and brought him out of the burning, smoke-filled house,” reported PF&R Public Information Officer Paul Corah. “Additional arriving fire companies prepared to attack the blaze.”

Through this door, firefighters raced inside to search for potentially trapped residents. PF&R photo

But the man they found wasn’t the only resident inside the burning house, Corah said. “Sandra Jones, who lives upstairs, reported that she was asleep at the time of the fire.  Her Pomeranian, ‘Sugar Bear’, began barking loudly, and woke her up to the smell of smoke. A short time later she heard the home’s smoke alarms go off, and evacuated.”
The 49-year-old man was transported to the Legacy Emanuel Burn Center with non-life-threatening burns, and smoke inhalation. The woman and her dog were unharmed.

“Fire investigators have determined that ‘smoker’s carelessness’ caused the fire, which resulted in approximately $25,000 damage to the home.” Corah later said.

Firefighters call “Sugar Bear” a hero for alerting residents to the fire. PF&R photo

“Working smoke alarms, an astute Pomeranian, and a quick response by firefighters all came together, resulting in a positive outcome for the individuals impacted by this morning’s fire,” Corah concluded.

© 2012 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News

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