Actions of quick-thinking teen save the day during fire

Will Sanders

December 10, 2013

Will E Sanders

Staff Writer


PIQUA — The actions of a quick-thinking 17-year-old female reduced the severity of what could have been a large house fire in the 100 block of Linden Avenue on Monday morning.

The fire department was dispatched to 134 Linden Ave. at approximately 10:15 a.m. after a mattress and a box spring in an upstairs bedroom caught fire inside the residence, said Piqua Fire Department Assistant Fire Chief Vince Ashcraft.

Fire officials said some of the burning debris was pushed through a second-story window, which landed on the home’s roof, and the smoldering remains of the mattress and box springs were taken outside through the front door.

The teenager, who was home from school, took her brother, a toddler, out of the home, and later ran to a neighbor’s home and called 9-1-1. In addition, another adult also fled the home.

First to arrive on the scene was Piqua police officer Todd Voskuhl, who was on his way to an unrelated crash scene when he heard the call. Since he was close to the scene Voskuhl responded.

“As I pulled up there was smoke coming out of the residence and a male was dragging a portion of a twin-sized mattress that had been completely burned up (out the front door),” Voskuhl said. “I asked if anybody else was inside and I … noticed some items on the roof, part of the mattress, on fire. I grabbed my fire extinguisher out of my cruiser and went upstairs and extinguished them the best I could before the fire department showed up.”

Voskuhl said a neighbor also assisted first responders during the fire.

Ashcraft applauded the actions of the teen and said only minor fire damage was reported as a result of the fire.

“She did everything right,” he said. “She called 9-1-1, she told them what was going on, and helped get everybody out of the house. She just did everything right.”

No injuries were reported as a result of the fire.

As of Tuesday afternoon the cause of the fire was listed as undetermined, according to Piqua Fire Chief Mike Rindler.