Twins Rescued from Kansas City House Fire

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Firefighters rescued twin 5-year-old boys from a burning Northland home Friday morning after an older sister escaped the blaze and ran to a neighbor’s house to summon help.

Ambulances took the boys, Abed and Zahed, to Children’s Mercy Hospital. The extent of their injuries was unavailable, but authorities said one boy was unresponsive.

The fire broke out about 9:45 a.m. in a one-story home in the 4100 block of North Jackson Avenue in Kansas City, North.

The boys’ 15-year-old sister, Areej Ahmed, had stayed home from her sophomore classes at North Kansas City High School to babysit them while their mother was at Children’s Mercy Hospital attending to their 17-year-old sister.

Areej said she awoke to the smell of smoke, and then heard a smoke alarm sounding. She escaped out a window and ran across the street to summon help.

Neighbor Frances Lombardo was watching a movie when she heard Areej pounding on her door. Lombardo called 911 before racing with Areej back to the home to find the boys.

Gary Wilbanks, another neighbor, joined them. He recently had installed new carpet inside the home and knew its interior. He first tried to enter through the front door, but the thick smoke knocked him back.

“They always say “‘Get low,’ you know?” Wilbanks said. “But there was no way.”

He ran back outside and circled around to a rear bedroom. He found a chair and a piece of wood about the size of a bed slat, and began trying to break the bedroom window.

“It was double-pane glass,” Wilbanks said. “It took me around eight or nine tries.”

When he finally broke through, he could see one of the boys.

“I kept yelling ‘Give me your hand!’ ” Wilbanks said.

The child hesitated. Wilbanks asked Areej to join him on the chair. She did and told the boy to stretch out his hand. But Wilbanks, given his precarious perch on the chair, had little leverage while trying to hoist the child out.

“I just couldn’t lift him,” he said.

Firefighters arrived and removed the boys one at a time from the home, Wilbanks said.

Their mother, Amira Ali, is an Arabic interpreter at Samuel U. Rodgers Health Center. She had spent the night at Children’s Mercy with her 17-year-old daughter.

Rescue in Tuscaloosa, Al

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Tuscaloosa firefighters rescued a 59-year-old woman from a house fire on Short 17th Street on Friday morning.

The Tuscaloosa Fire Rescue Service and Tuscaloosa Police Department responded to the fire around 7:20 a.m. and were told one person was still trapped inside.

Jacquelyn Stevenson was inside the home alone, but firefighters were able to find her and bring her out. The house was already “partially involved” with the fire at the time.

Stevenson has been taken to DCH with life-threatening injuries. One of her friends spoke about what she saw at the scene.

“My mother called me and told me she thought that my friend’s house was engulfed in flames. And I got dressed and I had to come over and when I started over they told me they pulled her out and that she was unresponsive,” Gwendolyn Jordan Sudduth said.

Witnesses say they attempted to get into the house when they saw the flames at about 7:30 a.m. but were unsuccessful.

Officials are still investigating the cause of the fire.

Ladder Rescue in Seattle



An early morning fire in South Seattle on Thursday left one home severely damaged. One man was rescued by fire officials from the roof.

No injuries were sustained.

The Seattle Fire Department responded to the home on South Graham Street just after 6:00 a.m., and flames were still coming from the front of the house.

Forcible entry was made, and heavy fire extended into the upper story of the home.

Officials estimated the damage at $50,000. An investigation determined the cause of the fire to be accidental — an overheated electrical cord.

FDNY Rescues Man from Trench


FDNY members worked with the NYPD to help save a man buried while doing excavation work in Manhattan on Jan. 21.

“Everyone worked together and did a great job,” Assistant Chief of Operations James Daly, Jr., said. “It’s testament to their skill, training and passion.”

Responding FDNY physician, Dr. Glenn Asaeda, agreed, “The teamwork was tremendous. It was nice to see something move so well.”

FDNY members were called to 413 Grand St. just after 4 p.m.

Firefighters from Ladder 15 and Ladder 18, along with Battalion 4, were first on scene and found the man buried to his chest in dirt and sand. They learned that when the trench collapsed, the man was completely covered in dirt, but other workers were able to clear it to his chest, so he could breathe.

he firefighters began preparing the scene for special operations – including Squad 18, Rescue 1 and NYPD ESU – padding the sides of the trench and making an anchor, to keep him steady in case the dirt began to move and bury him further.

When the scene was safe to enter, Rescue Paramedics from 01R2 administered crush syndrome treatment with guidance from Dr. Asaeda. When patients are in a confined space, toxins build up in their bloodstream and are released when they are freed from the compression, especially potassium. This can lead to kidney and heart failure, so the IV fluids and medications administered dilute the toxins and help the victim recover.

In this case, they additionally performed two new protocols. They administered Ketamine, a drug recently approved by the State of New York for pain management; and they used a warmer, which could warm IV fluids to around 100 degrees, helping someone hypothermic.

Firefighters used compressed air to loosen the dirt and, using the ConEd vacuum, remove the soil so they could retrieve him from the hole.

While Chief Daly said this type of job usually takes at least three hours, but they were able to remove the victim in just 59 minutes. The victim was in serious but stable condition and never lost consciousness.

Ladder Rescue in Pittsburgh, PA


PITTSBURGH —When firefighters arrived at a burning home Wednesday in Pittsburgh’s West End, they found a woman trapped on the roof of a porch.

“Days like this, it makes you proud to be a firefighter,” Acting Chief Dino Abbott said.

The fire started around 8:30 a.m. at Carol Dobrowolski’s home. She said her alarm company called her, and she tried but was unable to reach her daughter by phone.

When Dobrowolski arrived at the scene, her daughter had already been taken to a hospital with smoke inhalation and firefighters were treating Molly, her 15-year-old Chihuahua.

“They gave her oxygen and everything, and as soon as she (the dog) saw me, she knew me,” Dobrowolski said.

Firefighters rescued Dobrowolski’s daughter by using ladders to climb to the porch roof when the woman couldn’t make it down on her own.

“It seems like everybody just steps it up a little faster because you know those precious minutes matter,” Abbott said.

Firefighters found the dog not moving on the second floor of the house.

“Seems like she followed the owner’s daughter, and the firefighters were able to get the dog out,” Abbott said. “They put it on oxygen, and the medics think it’ll make a full recovery.”

Dobrowolski said she can’t thank firefighters, medics and police enough.

“They’re great, they are great. They saved both my babies,” she said.

The cause of the fire remains under investigation.

Dive Rescue in Evergreen, Colo


EVERGREEN, Colo. – A volunteer from the Evergreen Kiwanis club was airlifted to the hospital after he and the vehicle he was driving fell through the ice in the middle of Evergreen Lake Thursday morning.

A two-man crew took the ATV-style utility vehicle on Evergreen Lake to plow a path on the lake for the 5th annual Evergreen Ice Golf Tournament on Sunday.

The Evergreen Park and Recreation District said the vehicle is an RTV. It’s a utility ATV made by Kubota Tractor Corporation. It had a plow attached to it that is used to groom the ice.

One volunteer stepped off the RTV to do some measuring and he said when he turned back, the RTV was sinking, according to Evergreen Fire Rescue.

He called 911, as did someone who was driving by.

Evergreen Fire Rescue arrived within five minutes and they called in the West Metro dive team. The West Metro dive team rescued the man but he had been in the water for 30-35 minutes before he was pulled out.

The victim was airlifted to St. Anthony’s Central Hospital. His condition and name have not been released.

Sunday’s event has been canceled. The Ice Rink has been closed for the day.

The accident happened near the middle of Evergreen Lake, close to the channel for Bear Creek. It happened in between the east end of the lake, where fisherman ice fish, and the west end, where families ice skate and play hockey.

Authorities are not yet sure why the ice cracked here. They said officials do check the ice thickness in the skating area.

Evergreen Lake provides drinking water for the Evergreen Metro District. The intake valve has been shut off while crews determine if any fuels or fluids leaked from the cart.

Evergreen Lake is next to Highway 74 and Upper Bear Creek Road.

Rope Rescue in Indianapolis


INDIANAPOLIS – Indianapolis firefighters were called upon to perform a tactical rope rescue Sunday to aid an ill man under a bridge.

Emergency crews were alerted to a 53-year-old male suffering an unknown illness at 1:45 p.m. Sunday.

Responders arrived to find a complicated situation: An apparently homeless man who had been living underneath the bridge at Oliver Avenue and West McCarthy Street and was too sick to make it back up on his own.

Firefighters were called to perform a basket rescue – raising the man 20 feet to the bridge for medical transport.

The unidentified man was taken to Eskenazi Health, where he was listed in good condition.

Click on the video player above to see part of the rescue in action.

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Albany, N.Y. Firefighters Make Rescue


ALBANY, N.Y. — Albany firefighters rescued one person from a fire on Lincoln Avenue early Wednesday morning.

The call came in at around 1:30 a.m. when a caller noticed flames coming from the second story of the structure.

One person inside was able to get out on their own, and crews found and helped the second person leave the home.

Both were taken to the hospital for observation, but did not report any injuries.One firefighter was also hospitalized for minor injuries.

Fire officials are still investigating the cause of the fire. The heaviest damage was to the second floor, but officials do not believe the home will be a total loss. Eight fire companies responded in all.

Minneapolis, MN


MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – The 49-year-old woman hospitalized over the weekend following a north Minneapolis house fire is now in good condition.

The city’s fire department announced Tuesday that hospital officials said the woman has responded well to treatment and that she could be released from the Hennepin County Medical Center as soon as next week.

The woman’s name has yet to be released.

Firefighters rescued her early Sunday morning after the back porch of a home on 1001 James Ave. caught fire. The woman’s condition was initially described by hospital personnel as serious.

The cause of the fire remains under investigation