Aid car crew rescues elderly man from burning bedroom

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

On Saturday, March 23, a Shoreline Fire Aid Car crew thought they were responding to a routine medical alert device alarm at the home of an elderly resident in the 100 Block of NW 189th St.  

As they approached the front door, they heard the sound of a smoke alarm. As the two person crew made entry, they discovered large amounts of smoke filling the home -- coming from a bedroom.  They called for additional resources and upgraded the call to a house fire. 

The two firefighters then entered the smoke-filled bedroom, discovered an elderly male apparently unable to move on his own, and pulled him from the house. They used an extinguisher to control the fire on the floor of the bedroom, vented the home, and turned their patient over to medics.

Arriving engine crews cleared smoke and debris from the home and salvaged what they could of the homeowner's belongings.

Fire investigators say the cause of the blaze was related to unsafely discarded smoking materials.  The man was treated for smoke inhalation and released from the hospital within a few hours.  

"This aid car crew carried out a swift and heroic effort to save this man's life", said Mark Bunje, Fire Chief. "The elderly resident would have survived only a few more minutes in the smoke-filled environment they encountered." The patient has been referred to Shoreline Fire's Community Services Officer for follow-up.

Shoreline Fire reminds residents that accidental fires due to smoking are common and can be deadly for elderly and disabled residents unable to escape on their own. If you have concerns about an elderly relative who may not be safe at home, contact Shoreline Fire Department's CSO at 206-533-6500.


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