WASHINGTON DC – A group of DC firefighters are currently being hailed as heroes, following the rescue of an elderly woman and her cat from a burning apartment.
Shortly before 8 a.m. on Monday morning, firefighters received 911 calls after smoke and flames had erupted from an apartment in a building on the 3100 block of Bladensburg Rd. in Northeast D.C.
When D.C. firefighters Lt. Scott Martin and Sgts. Benjamin Evers and Zakarij Wright first arrived on the scene, they rushed to the seventh floor and forced their way into the apartment.
“There was basically zero visibility in the apartment,” Martin stated. “There was a fair amount of flames in the bedroom.”
As they searched for the actual source of the fire through the dense smoke, one of the firefighters spotted a woman on the floor.
“The smoke was luckily kind of banked down to our knees so when we got real low to the floor we could see her,” Martin explained.
The woman couldn’t speak and was actually badly burned, but the rescuers said she was grunting which indicated to them she was alive.
Fighting back the flames, the first responders rushed the woman out of the apartment and down the stairs to an ambulance which was waitingde.
After the woman was declared safe, Evers spotted a cat on the balcony. The animal was obviously injured and scared, but Evers said he said he was able to put the animal in a carrier and get it out of the apartment.
The woman remains in the hospital but is cureently in stable condition, according to authorities. Animal Control was called to help the cat, and the animal is ultimately expected to be OK. The cause of the fire has officially been ruled accidental, fire officials said.
Evers explained that firefighters receive many calls to this particular building, which is home to many elderly residents, and it was their knowledge of the building’s layout and their past training which made the difference.
“No one sees anybody as heroes,” Evers stated. “We were doing our duty, and it was being in the right place at the right time.”