At 8:07 AM on 3-23-16 units from Wolfforth Fire & EMS and Woodrow Fire Department were called to a report of a structure fire in the 6600 block of County Road 7700, south of Wolfforth. Upon arrival, units reported smoke showing from the structure and immediately began fighting the blaze. The fire was extinguished quickly. Only one homeowner was home at the time of fire and the family credits working smoke detectors for saving her life. She was transported to the hospital but was released later that evening. Firefighters were able to rescue two dogs and 1 cat from inside the structure. The animals were alive, but suffered from severe smoke inhalation and were unresponsive. High flow oxygen was administered to the animals via special oxygen masks that are designed to fit over an animal’s muzzle. As of this morning, homeowner Steve Washington reports both dogs are back to normal but the family’s cat does remain critical. He shared with MyWolfforthNews his gratitude for the group of Wolfforth firemen and also Woodrow firefighers who responded yesterday and that their family, friends and employers had also be very supportive.
According to the National Fire Protection Association “Most fire deaths are not caused by burns, but by smoke inhalation. Often smoke incapacitates so quickly that people are overcome and can’t make it to an otherwise accessible exit. The synthetic materials commonplace in today’s homes produce especially dangerous substances. As a fire grows inside a building, it will often consume most of the available oxygen, slowing the burning process. This “incomplete combustion” results in toxic gases.
Smoke detectors can’t save lives unless they are properly installed and maintained. According to the National Fire Protection Association, smoke detector batteries need to be replaced at least once a year and the smoke detector should be tested every month.