The residence at 1013 32nd Street. Photo by WRCB Staff Photojournalist Jared Guest
CHATTANOOGA, TN (WRCB) -- An early morning fire Friday left an East Lake family homeless.
About 3:20am, Jennifer Saddler told firefighters he awoke to find fire in the living room of her home at 1013 32nd Street.
Saddler helped evacuate the other occupants in the house; five children and three adults. Chattanooga Fire Department officials stated in a news release that smoke alarms were present in the residence, but did not activate, possibly because there were no working batteries in them.
Once safely out of the residence, Sandler called 911. Chattanooga police officers arrived first, and confirmed the residence was on fire and that all of the occupants were safe and accounted for.
Firefighters from four companies worked in near-freezing temperatures and windy conditions to extinguish the fire.
CFD Captain David Barie said two cats ran from the residence when doors were opened, and two dogs were rescued from the house by firefighters.
A search for a third dog ended well when when firefighters found it alive in the house and carried out to the residents. One cat perished in the blaze.
The fire was contained to the front areas of the house, but the rest of the structure suffered heavy smoke and water damage. The dollar loss was estimated at $80,000 for the structure and contents. Volunteers with the American Red Cross arrived quickly to provide assistance to the family.