EAST PALESTINE, Ohio (WKBN) – The East Palestine Fire Department had a busy Easter Sunday. They were sent to a house fire where a neighbor and his son helped buy the department some time.

The house is in the 500 block of E. Main Street. Damage from the fire was minimal, all thanks to some neighbors.

Doug Hunter was alerted by his son who saw smoke coming from a neighbor’s house while playing on his trampoline.

“He was able to make entry into the house and retrieve all the family pets and they were safeguarded at his home. Then he also informed me that he went around to the back of the house and started fighting the fire with a fire extinguisher,” said East Palestine Fire Chief Joshua Brown.

Hunter is a volunteer firefighter from Pennsylvania. Had his son not noticed the fire and alerted him, Chief Brown said the damage would have been a whole lot worse.

“Had he not seen the smoke and alerted his parents, the fire could have spread throughout the entire home and could have also killed the family’s pets,” Chief Brown said.

Chief Brown says teaching your kids to be aware of their surroundings is very important, not just for fire safety but for safety in general.

“If you see something, say something. Get the proper authorities notified early so that whatever the situation may be, whatever the emergency is that it can be handled with minimal damage,” Chief Brown said.

Chief Brown said the fire started due to hot coals being placed in a bin by the homeowner.

The damage was contained to the rear wall in the back of the house. There was also minor water and smoke damage in the kitchen.

The fire has been ruled accidental.