Off-duty Firefighter, Neighbor With Garden Hose Helps Renters As Fire Burns Draper House

Sep 3, 2019, 5:43 AM | Updated: 6:19 am
House fire in Draper on Sept. 2, 2019....
House fire in Draper on Sept. 2, 2019.

DRAPER, Utah – An off-duty firefighter and a neighbor with a garden hose became the unlikely first-responders to a fire that ended up tearing through a home Monday afternoon.

The off-duty Unified Fire Authority firefighter was able to alert the two renters who were inside the home located near 13000 South and Long Tail Drive and get them out safely, Draper City Fire Chief Clint Smith said.

“He was returning home after a movie here in Draper, noticed some smoke in the area and went to investigate,” Smith said. “He was able to help them safely evacuate the home as well as remove a few of their vehicles from the garage.”

Meanwhile, Hunter Hale said his son, John, jumped in to try to help douse the flames, which seemed to originate somewhere around the back deck.

“He grabbed the hose that we use back here, jumped over the fence and did what those firemen are doing now with the hose,” Hale said.

Smith said the flames spread up the house and into the attic space and the damage is extensive, despite the best efforts of firefighters.

Fire crews initiated a second alarm because of the extreme heat and that the fire had spread to the attic.

House fire in Draper on Sept. 2, 2019.

House fire in Draper on Sept. 2, 2019.

“It’s hard to look at it,” said Teri Holt, who bought the home in 1999 and then converted it into a rental after her husband passed away and her children grew up and left. “It took us a year to fix it up.”

Holt said she put $80,000 into restoring the home.

“Now, it’s very sad,” Holt said. “The back of the house is ruined and all throughout the top floor and in the front.”

Smith said the cause of the fire remained under investigation.

Holt said she was grateful that neither her renters nor her neighbors were injured in the fire.

Hale said the experience was “scary.”

“Fire doesn’t play favorites with anything,” Hale said.

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Off-duty Firefighter, Neighbor With Garden Hose Helps Renters As Fire Burns Draper House