Elmwood family saved by smoke alarms in suspected electrical fire

Posted By Kinnard, Clayton & Beveridge || May 3, 2011

A family of six in Elmwood is thankful for their smoke detectors after an early morning fire on May 1 destroyed their home but resulted in no serious injuries. Smith County fire officials have not yet determined the cause of the fire, but the homeowner suspects it may have been caused by a faulty fuse box or a lightning strike.

This family was extremely lucky -- no one was injured and even the family's goldfish was saved from the blaze. Electrical fires can be caused by faulty wiring or other dangerous conditions on a property that homeowners may not even be aware of.

Faulty fuse panel or wiring may have caused the fast-moving, destructive blaze

According to officials, the fire broke out just after 7:00 a.m. on Sunday. Homeowner Nancy M. says she first saw the flames below the fuse panel.

"I come on down the steps and I seen the flames, they got out and...my husband went and got the fire extinguisher, but as soon as he sprayed it, it shot up the wall and across the roof," she told WKRN-TV 2.

The family of six includes four children ranging in age from 5 to 15. "We was all still in the bed, the kids come running out in their underwear and pajamas and yeah, we're very lucky at least you look at the house, everyone got out," the woman said.

The fire moved so fast that the family might not have made it out without injury if it had not been for the smoke detectors. The family did make it out, but the house and essentially all of the family's belongings were destroyed. Flames were seen shooting from the roof and smoke billowed out the door of the home that the family had lived in for about two years.

Why not test your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors now?

Smoke detectors can save your life by giving you as much warning as possible about a fire in your home. For smoke and carbon monoxide detectors that require batteries, fire departments recommend changing those batteries twice a year. You should also test both wired and battery-operated smoke and carbon monoxide detectors twice a year.

An easy way to remember to test your safety devices and to change the batteries is to do so when the clock changes from Standard Time to Daylight Savings Time and back. If you haven't tested your safety devices in a while, take a moment and do it now. Your family's safety depends on it.

Categories: Personal Injury
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