Broken Arrow Teens Attempt Rescue In House Fire

Sunday, October 10th 2010, 8:41 am
By: News On 6

BROKEN ARROW, Oklahoma -- Two Broken Arrow teens tried to give aid in a house fire that destroyed one house and damaged others early Sunday morning.

The teens were on their way home from the fair shortly after midnight when they noticed smoke coming from a nearby house in the 7500 block of East Ironwood.

James Watson and James Bristol, both 18, ran to the burning house as Tailor Franklin, 17, and 18-year-old Alyssa Strickland called 911.

Watson said he knocked on the front door of the house to wake anyone that might be inside.

"I banged on the door trying to get somebody to come to the door, but nobody answered," Watson said.

Joined by Bristol, he then went to the back of the burning house. The teens kicked in the back door trying to make sure any residents were out.

Bristol said the two got to the kitchen before the smoke overwhelmed them.

"I couldn't take it; he couldn't take it, so we backed out real fast," he said. Bristol said they didn't have time to worry about their own safety.

"We were more concerned about whether there were people in there or not, really," he said.

The Broken Arrow Fire Department arrived and did multiple searches of the house. They found no victims.

Deputy Chief James Suddath said people often feel compelled to help in such a situation, but they are putting their lives at risk.

"When you're dealing with these house fires, the heat, the smoke – they're deadly. It's just a dangerous thing to do," he said.

Suddath said they believe the vacant house is a complete loss. A few surrounding homes sustained minor heat damage.

Broken Arrow Fire Department is investigating the cause of the blaze.