North Charleston Fire Captain Christopher Gay recounts rescuing two disabled individuals from a burning apartment.
Two disabled adults were rescued by North Charleston Firefighters on the night of June 18, 2014 after successful extraction from a burning apartment.
When firefighters arrived on scene, heavy smoke was coming from the first floor of the Joseph Paul Apartments at 2680 Bonds Ave. After being advised of two occupants in the home, the first crew initiated a search for the residents. The crew found a male first and removed him from the apartment, and a second crew successfully located and removed a female.
Care of the two residents was immediately taken over by Charleston County EMS, transporting them to MUSC in critical condition. Both have been transferred to the Augusta Burn Center.
The fire was controlled in less than 15 minutes.
The two-story apartment complex was not required to have a residential sprinkler system when it was built. The apartment did have smoke alarms, but it is currently unclear if they were functioning at the time of the fire.
North Charleston Fire Department reminds residents that fire safety planning and fire drills are an important part of your overall safety plan, especially for caregivers and people with disabilities.
An escape should be planned around disabilities to include sleeping near an exit, arranging to sleep on the first floor, and knowing at least two ways out of each room. In addition, others should be aware of your fire plan, including family members, neighbors, building managers, and friends. It is best to have the fire safety plan practiced with others.
For additional fire safety information for people with disabilities, visit https://www.northcharleston.org/Residents/Fire-Department/Staying-Safe/For-Disabled-Residents.aspx