PAnews.com, Port Arthur, Texas

Local News

January 16, 2013

Port Neches house a ‘total loss’ after fire

PORT NECHES — Billoughy black clouds of smoke could be seen from all over Mid-County Wednesday afternoon when a house in the 2000 block of 14th Street caught on fire.

Firefighters from Port Neches, Groves and Nederland worked to extinguish the flames “non-stop” for more than an hour after the call came into dispatch at 4:11 p.m., said Port Neches Police Officer Marty Riley.

The one-story house, which could be seen from the back parking lot of St. Elizabeth’s Catholic Church, burned especially hot in the attic, damaging most of the roof.

The family escaped the home without any injuries, said Port Neches Fire Chief Steve Curran. The family dog was momentarily trapped in the backyard, but Officer Riley was called to remove him to safety.

“It’s going to be gone — it looks like they lost it,” Curran siad.

Curran said that though major burns are rare in the area, the Mid-County departments are dispatched to structure fires every two or three days.

“We have about the same population as Port Arthur and Beaumont, but we have newer infrastructure in this area so there are less fires,” Curran said. “A lot of the fires we are called to can be stopped pretty quick with early notifications.”

With every call that comes to the Central Dispatch in Nederland, a truck from each city in Mid-County responds.

More than a year ago, Port Neches purchased a ladder pump with grant from the federal government.

“What’s good about it is that it has a pump on it already, so we don’t have to have a pumper truck to feed it water,” Curran said. “We just connect a hose to a fire hydrant.”

The cause of the fire is unknown at this time, but Curran said there will be a full investigation.

Email: jgarcia@panews.com

Twitter: julesbmt

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