Dog jumps out of window to escape Berks County house fire
BERKS COUNTY – Two dogs and a cat are safe after a devastating fire left a home in Berks County in ruins Wednesday morning.
Eyewitness video Justin Steinmetz shows smoke and flame billowing from the house around 8 a.m. Initially, flames are seen shooting from the roof.
He said he saw the fire while driving down the road to work. After knocking on neighbors’ doors to call 911, he attempted to put out parts of the fire with a garden hose. He realized, within minutes, that the garden hose was a poor solution compared to the fire hoses and he reluctantly gave up.
She can be heard in the video saying, “I hope the dog is out.”
Moments later, a dog was seen running frantically across the back of the yard. Officials say he was rescued through the front door.
The dog jumps from the window to escape the house fire. (Steinmetz Family Farms)
Suddenly another dog could be heard crying in the video. When the man ran to the front of the house, a dog was seen trying to escape through a window, but got scared.
With the help of neighbors, the dog jumped out of the window to safety. Burns and ashes were visible on the dog’s back. The neighbors did their best to calm the dog down. The man says the dog named “Charlie” is recovering in hospital.
“Oh he’s burnt,” the man said as he tried to hose down the dog.
A fire destroys a house in Fleetwood (Blandon Fire Company)
Two cats were also said to have been in the house. A cat was found and rescued on the lower level, but another cat is still missing.
Flames are seen tearing through the side and back of the house and rising into the sky as fire crews arrive. The roof, side of the house and backyard porch were completely engulfed in flames as the aluminum siding can be seen melting and falling off the building.
About 12 minutes into the video, a woman can be heard crying in the background and saying, “Thank you.”
The final moments of the man’s video show the aftermath of the fire with more than half of the roof missing and the interior of the house completely burned.
House destroyed by fire in Berks County. (Steinmetz family farms)
A GoFundMe page was created in honor of the family that lived in the house. Nearly $31,000 was raised in just one day.
“Our hearts are broken for the Stump family,” the page reads. “We are very grateful that they are well, but we are painfully aware that their lives will be significantly affected by the devastating fire at their house today.”