Good Samaritans Help Neighbors Close to House Fire - WMBB News 13 - The Panhandle's News Leader

Good Samaritans Help Neighbors Close to House Fire

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It's a modern day version of the old Good Samaritan fable when a fire on Lorado Avenue in Hiland Park threatens not only the home where it started, but neighboring structures as well. Keeping this fire at bay didn't leave time to think about proximity or comfort.

"I'm in good shape compared to what I could have been real easy," said Carl Harris, a next door neighbor.  

Just feet away from a burning fire Harris' favorite hobbies, model planes and a bass fishing boat, sat at risk in his garage.

"I could have never got this boat out by myself," said Harris. "It's too heavy. It took about three or four of us to move it.

"I'm very thankful for the help I had."

Russell Woodward was working in the area when the fire broke out and came to Harris' aid.

"I grabbed a hose and started spraying down the back of the garage," said Woodward. "I didn't want it to spread."

With nothing invested Woodward ran towards the fire along with Springfield city workers and other good samaritans. All to help someone he'd never met.

"I don't know I was at the neighbors house doing work and I figured any other person would try to save someone else's house," said Woodward.

Multiple agencies responded to the fire including Bay County Fire Rescue and Springfield Fire Department. Homeowners say it originated from a lawn mower inside the garage.

"Instant fireball," described Battalion Chief for Bay County Marcus Vigil. "By the time our crews got here a few minutes later the entire garage was fully Involved and it was starting to entire in the house."

Crews spent over an hour fighting the blaze and trying to save what was left of the home and protect surrounding buildings.

"One of our goals whenever we attack fires like this is to protect everything around it so our initial efforts were to protect the exposures as well as making sure the initial structure is being attended to," said Vigil.

As for Harris he is thankful for the heroics of complete strangers.

"I thank 'em very much," said Harris. "I'm happy with what they did."

Firefighters did stay at the home off Game Farm Road for some time to make sure hot spots didn't re-ignite.

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