Century-old Nacogdoches house destroyed by fire - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

Century-old Nacogdoches house destroyed by fire

Source: Kevin White Source: Kevin White
NACOGDOCHES, TX (KTRE) -

A house built in the late 1800s burned to the ground Tuesday night in what fire investigators believe could have started with a gas leak.

The house, which had been divided into three apartments, had five occupants. Two were in the house at the time of the fire, but escaped safely. It is located on Hospital Street.

SLIDESHOW:

House fire

According to investigators, one of the residents had turned on an electric heater and then heard a "whoosh."

"I was in this apartment," Russ Havard, one of the home's occupants, said. "It made a little spark, and that's when I heard the noise behind the vent right there."

He opened the closet, saw a wall of fire, and got the other resident out safely.

"And the flames were probably already up in the ceiling about a quarter of the way."

Havard had seconds to call 911 and search for occupants. He found none. However, he didn't know that a hearing-impaired tenant was asleep in one of the units, totally unaware of the blaze. Fortunately, a neighbor reminded him of the possibility.

"And that was exactly what was going on, and he was kinda coming out coughing when they knocked the door in," Havard said.

Firefighters were called to the scene around 8 p.m.

Investigators believe there may have been a gas leak behind the walls. Once the heater came on, it sparked the fire.

"There was raw gas coming out of the main pipe in that room going straight into the attic space, and it spread pretty quick through the attic," Del Birdwell, a fire marshal with the Nacogdoches Fire Department, said.

The deaf man's hearing aids burned. The graduate art student lost her original works. An out-of-town tenant had to ask a friend to look for a cherished memory of her recently deceased dad. There were losses, but everyone is safe and grateful.

"The firefighters were great and the neighbors were just incredible, so that's the main thing I want to say."

Copyright 2012 KTRE. All rights reserved.

  • Local News on KCBD.comNewsMore>>

  • Massive Trump tax cuts face big hurdles as debt mounts

    Massive Trump tax cuts face big hurdles as debt mounts

    Wednesday, April 26 2017 5:56 AM EDT2017-04-26 09:56:41 GMT
    Wednesday, April 26 2017 5:56 AM EDT2017-04-26 09:56:41 GMT

    President Donald Trump's plan to provide massive tax breaks to corporations faces big challenges as Washington struggles with mounting debt.

    President Donald Trump's plan to provide massive tax breaks to corporations faces big challenges as Washington struggles with mounting debt.

  • Cat faces down snake in Texas standoff

    Cat faces down snake in Texas standoff

    Tuesday, April 25 2017 11:31 PM EDT2017-04-26 03:31:29 GMT
    Wednesday, April 26 2017 5:00 AM EDT2017-04-26 09:00:17 GMT

    A Facebook post by a Texas police department featured a courageous cat facing off with a giant snake. But the message was be careful. 

    A Facebook post by a Texas police department featured a courageous cat facing off with a giant snake. But the message was be careful. 

  • US sets up missile defense in S. Korea as North shows power

    US sets up missile defense in S. Korea as North shows power

    Wednesday, April 26 2017 4:17 AM EDT2017-04-26 08:17:43 GMT
    Wednesday, April 26 2017 4:17 AM EDT2017-04-26 08:17:43 GMT

    A U.S. guided-missile submarine arrived in South Korea on Tuesday and envoys from the U.S., Japan and South Korea met in Tokyo, as North Korea marked the anniversary of the founding of its military.

    A U.S. guided-missile submarine arrived in South Korea on Tuesday and envoys from the U.S., Japan and South Korea met in Tokyo, as North Korea marked the anniversary of the founding of its military.

Powered by Frankly