Firefighter injured while battling Crestview house fire; two dogs trapped inside die
CRESTVIEW — A firefighter was injured in a house fire last week that also resulted in the death of two dogs.
The Crestview Fire Department responded to a home on Texas Parkway at 8:11 a.m. Wednesday after a bystander spotted smoke billowing from the house, said Corey Winkler, public information officer for the department.
Initial reports indicated that residents may have been trapped inside. Units quickly began searching the home when they arrived but did not find anyone. The homeowner arrived shortly after and told firefighters that two dogs were still inside.
The Crestview Police Department, Eglin Air Force Base Fire Department and Okaloosa County Emergency Services assisted. Several people tried to resuscitate the dogs but were unsuccessful.
Crews quickly extinguished the blaze. One firefighter suffered a knee injury and was treated at an area hospital, Winkler said. No other injuries were reported.
The blaze was mostly contained to the kitchen, where it is believed to have started. The official cause was cited as a "stove fire." The kitchen sustained heavy damage but the rest of the home remained intact.
“Firefighters had to remove the ceiling to check the attic for extensions, which is pretty standard for any fire we go to. There was a lot of insulation that had to be pulled,” Winkler said. “As far as the rest of the home, my understanding is that it’s salvageable.”
Winkler said firefighters tend to see a rise in fires during the winter months and during the holidays. Cooking fires are some of the most common, next to fires caused by overloaded extension cords.
To prevent house fires, homeowners should remember to never leave a stove or burner unattended, he said.
“If you decide you’re going to leave the kitchen while you’re cooking, remove the pot from the stove or from the burner so there’s no longer heat," Winkler said. “Folks that are frying their turkeys, be a little more fire safety conscious during the holidays because that’s when we see more fire incidents occur.”