Family of 14 burned out of Westside home
American Red Cross helped family pay for hotel room
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – A family of 14 lost their Jacksonville home to a raging fire. Everyone made it out safely, but the damage is extensive.
The house on Buckley Court off of Firestone Road on the Westside caught fire around 11:15 a.m. Saturday, causing smoke to billow hundreds of feet into the air.
Jacksonville Fire and Rescue Department crews called the fire under control about 20 minutes after the call came in and tweeted that no one was hurt.
All 14 people living in the home managed to make it out safely. The American Red Cross was assisting the family and helped them into a hotel room, but family members said after Monday they would need to find another place to stay.
Tera Thomas lived in the home and is thankful to be alive.
"We don’t even know. We were sitting in the living room. All of a sudden, we smelled smoke, and the next thing I know, stuff started popping," Thomas said.
Her son was also inside at the time.
"I just panicked," he said.
Most of the damage was evident in the carport. Thomas said she and her family left their home with only the clothes on their backs.
"We lost everything. Every single thing," she said.
The fire chief said there was a live power line on the ground when fire and rescue crews arrived and JEA had to shut off the power.
The cause of the fire is under investigation.
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