Single-Digit Temperatures Create Difficulties For Firefighters
TULSA, Oklahoma - Two families in Green Country escaped their burning homes Sunday, some escaping with their lives, but nothing to keep them warm while their homes burned.
Below freezing temperatures made things difficult for firefighters.
The single-digit temperatures didn't stop firefighters from being able to spray water on a North Tulsa home, but the frigid air and icy sidewalks did prove to be a challenge.
"We definitely try to be more cautious - we try to rotate guys more frequently to make sure the guys are fresh, warm and good to go," said Tulsa Fire Capt. Tim Lopez.
Broken Arrow and Coweta firefighters faced the same challenges, working for about five hours to put out the flames at a Wagoner County home where a family living there for about 60 years, doesn't have a roof now.
Both families are okay.
"God has our backs always so I keep positive because God is number one in my life so, he keeps us alive, I'm gonna keep positive," said Rickey Green.
Green said he never expected a fire to spark while trying to fix a problem at his dad's home on North Delaware.
The family used a heat gun to thaw their frozen pipes and firefighters confirmed that's what started the fire.
"We tried to unfreeze them and my dad laid the gun down just for a second and it caught the wood on the house on that side on fire," Green said.
Green and his wife Erica traveled from Florida to be with family for the holidays, and while the weather is a major adjustment, they didn't make any changes in their plans to go to church.
"Regardless of whatever the situation is, we're gonna go to church, pray through it, and keep on moving," Erica Green said.
That's the same attitude firefighters had while battling Sunday's weather.
"When it's cold like this it's hard on us, cold on the guys," Lopez said. "But we do the best we can. That's what we signed up to do."