TEMPLE HILLS – Residents in a Temple Hills neighborhood are calling five Prince George's County firefighters heroes after they rescued three children from a house fire early Sunday morning.
Just after 7 a.m., a Prince George's County 911 call taker received an emergency call from a mother stating that her house was on fire in the 4700 block of Alcon Drive and her children were trapped on the second floor of the home.
When the first unit arrived on the scene from Silver Hill Fire/EMS Station 829 with five Prince George's County firefighters onboard, it reported smoke showing from a two-story house with a fire in the kitchen and three children still trapped on the top floor.
Prince George's County Fire Lieutenant Michael Perritt directed a firefighter to advance a hose line to the first floor kitchen and extinguish the fire, which only took a few minutes. Perritt and two other firefighters then went to the second floor to search for the trapped occupants.
“Perritt and the two firefighters encountered high heat and near zero visibility when they reached the top floor, but they were able to locate two children in one bedroom and an infant in another bedroom,” said Mark Brady, spokesperson for Prince George's County Fire Department.
Once all three children were located they were brought down through the interior stairwell where firefighters initiated immediate rescue breathing techniques on two of the children and cardio pulmonary resuscitation (CPR) on the infant. All three children responded to the life-saving efforts and started breathing on their own.
The three children, along with a 17 year-old male who was able to escape the fire, were transported in stable condition to a burn center suffering from heat and exposure to smoke.
Prior to firefighters arriving on the scene, an adult male, who is believed to be the father, was able to jump from a second floor window. He was not injured, Brady said.
“I’m proud of the actions of everyone on this call,” Prince George’s County Fire/EMS Department Fire Chief Benjamin Barksdale said. “They were able to work as part of a team and the entire Prince George’s County Fire/EMS Department. Congratulations to them on a job well done!”
There were eight occupants inside the house at the time of the fire. A total of nine normally reside in the house and will be displaced. They are being assisted by the County Citizen Services Unit and the American Red Cross.
The cause of the fire is still undetermined and the fire loss amount is still being estimated. No additional injuries were reported.
“We believe a working smoke alarm alerted and awoke the sleeping occupants,” Brady said. “Occupants stand a 50 percent better chance of surviving a home fire if they have working smoke alarms.”