Weatherford Democrat

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February 13, 2013

Fire official saves disabled woman from house fire

Assistant fire marshal enters smoke-filled residence to locate, remove trapped woman

By JOEL KERTOK | Parker County Public Information Officer

PARKER COUNTY – Those employed in emergency response know the job does not come with normal business hours; in fact night calls are just a regular part of the business.

Yet for Parker County Assistant Fire Marshal Frank Watson, Monday night ended up as anything but regular.

He and his wife had put their son to bed and were getting ready for bed themselves when Watson said his phone started ringing.

It was ESD 6 Station 44 Battalion Chief Doug Walters, telling Watson of a fire.

“I received the call from Chief Walters at 10:29 p.m.,” Watson said. “I was told that the fire department had just been toned out and the caller reporting the fire said she was trapped in her bedroom.”

Watson said he happened to know the woman, Terri Wood, and knew her to be visually impaired. He said he grabbed his keys and quickly made his way to the home, located off Tin Top Road south of Weatherford.

He said upon arrival the first thing he noticed was heavy smoke escaping from the home and a woman sticking her head out the window yelling for help. He called in his arrival to dispatch.

“It was a manufactured house so it was a distance of at least six feet from the bottom of the window to the ground,” Watson said. “I could see that there were no flames in her bedroom, just very heavy smoke. I ran to the front door of the house and checked the door for heat. I made the determination that there was not fire at the door.”

Watson said upon opening the door he could see nothing but smoke. He took a deep breath of the clean outside air and got low and hurried towards the woman’s bedroom, feeling for the door.

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