Fire Destroys Basye Home

Officials Credit Smoke Alarm, Neighbor With Saving Eight

Posted: November 5, 2012

Shenandoah County fire officials credit a smoke alarm and an alert neighbor with helping to save eight people Sunday from a house fire in Basye.


Firefighters were called to 8312 Supinlick Ridge Road at about 3:30 a.m., where a home was engulfed in flames and on the verge of spreading to two vehicles in the driveway and a neighboring house.


All eight of the occupants had evacuated by the time firefighters arrived, but three sustained what were believed to be non-life-threatening injuries.


Firefighters were able to keep the blaze from spreading, although the vehicles and nearby house did have heat damage, firefighters say.


The home was a total loss, and the Red Cross is assisting the residents, said John Collins, spokesman for Shenandoah County Fire and Rescue. The cause is under investigation.


A smoke alarm in a stairwell between the basement and first floor alerted some of the occupants, who escaped, while a neighbor warned other occupants on the second level of the home, first responders say.


Collins said three of the residents were taken to Shenandoah Memorial Hospital in Woodstock.


Two needed treatment for smoke inhalation and the third for burns, but the extent of those injuries could not be confirmed as of press time Sunday.


The relationship between the home’s eight occupants, whom fire officials did not identify, also could not be confirmed.


The neighbor who assisted the home’s occupants helped raise a ladder to a second-floor loft, where some of the residents were located. They used the ladder to escape, according to a press release.


“They were very lucky,” David Ferguson, Shenandoah County fire marshal, said in the release.


Firefighters encourage homeowners to replace the batteries in their smoke alarms twice a year, when daylight savings time begins and ends. Coincidentally, daylight savings ended the same day as the fire.


“This morning we had an example of why that’s so important,” Collins said in the release. “Without a smoke alarm, this could have been a tragic fire.”


Anyone who needs a smoke alarm or has questions about them can call Shenandoah County Fire and Rescue at (540) 459-6167.


Contact Jeremy Hunt at 574-6273 or

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