Family of five escapes home fire on Worley Street

Friday, November 13, 2009 | 12:31 p.m. CST

COLUMBIA — A family of five and its two dogs safely escaped a house fire early Friday morning on West Worley Street.

The fire started at 1:46 a.m. andwas in the basement of the home, where Columbia Fire Battalion Chief Steve Sapp said a space heater and several other electronics overloaded the electrical circuit. There were no smoke detectors in the home.

Sapp said the homeowner’s daughter was sleeping in the basement when she woke up overheated and noticed the smoke. She went upstairs to alert the other four residents. One occupant of the home walked a block to Fire Station No. 2 to report the fire.

Sixteen firefighters responded to the scene within two minutes, as well as three engines, one ladder, one heavy rescue squad and two incident command vehicles. The fire was knocked down in five minutes, Sapp said, leaving an initial damage estimate of $7,000. The home is insured.

The family was displaced from the home and is staying with friends for the time being. No one was injured.

“It’s a miraculous thing that occurred,” Sapp said.

Sapp said the department would be returning to the home later Friday to install smoke detectors.

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