Athens family survives late night house fire

ATHENS — An Athens family survived a late night house fire thanks to working smoke detectors, Athens-Clarke County fire officials say.

At 11:43 p.m. on May 18, firefighters were dispatched to a report of a structure fire located on Chesterton Drive. The first unit arrived on the scene at 11:48 p.m. and reported that a two-story wood-frame home had heavy fire involvement along the roofline.

The residents of the home had already evacuated the structure and confirmed that all family members and pets were accounted for.

Due to heavy fire involvement, and reports of the safety of the residents, the decision was made to perform an exterior attack on the fire with large handheld hose lines. Once crews were able to get a large portion of the fire knocked down, they safely transitioned to an interior fire attack to completely mitigate the emergency.

The fire is under investigation with the Fire Marshal’s Office on the scene today. The fire started on the upper floor of the structure with the point of origin unknown at this time.

According to fire officials, the residents were notified about the fire by their smoke alarm, giving them the time and opportunity to safely exit the structure. 

“We are happy to see a positive outcome in an otherwise tragic situation,” Athens-Clarke County Fire Chief Jeff Scarbrough said. “Without working smoke alarms, the result could have been much different”.

No injuries were reported. The American Red Cross was called to assist the family with their short-term needs.

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