The charred skeleton of a house in East Palestine is all that is left after flames tore through the structure Thursday.
The miracle is that workers who were outside of the house at the time were able to help the people inside and get everyone out safely.
The fire broke out at the house on S. Pleasant Drive around 9 a.m. That’s when Gary and Dawn Frazier say they were awakened by the sound of their fire alarm.
Gary said he saw that the back of the house was on fire and tried to put it out.
East Palestine Fire Chief Josh Brown said a group of construction smelled something burning but at first thought it was trash.
“Then they noticed some smoke rolling from the home right here behind us and they were able to knock on the door and make contact with the residents inside and get them to safety,” Brown said.
Brown said the house was fully engulfed when crews got there.
“I witnessed the homeowner escaping the home. They were able to make it out without injury. Unfortunately, their home was a total loss,” Brown said.
Gary and Dawn were the only people inside at the time. They have two sons who weren’t home. They also have three pets. Two died in the fire and the other is missing.
Brown said at this point he thinks the fire is accidental.
“Right now, there are no indicators saying that there is foul play involved. With the extent of the damage, we’re unable to narrow it down to exactly where it started right now,” Brown said.
The Red Cross is helping the family. They are staying with friends for the time being.