Off-duty firefighter saves family from burning home after car catches fire in driveway

Posted at 4:05 PM, Apr 25, 2019
and last updated 2019-04-25 22:29:11-04

DETROIT (WXYZ) — A car catches fire as a homeowner pulls into her driveway, damaging her home and destroying a neighboring one. It happened on the city’s east side on Waveney Street near Cadieux.

“My van caught on fire and and it’s catching the houses on fire that’s next to it,” said Katrina Carter, that’s what she told a 911 operator.

Carter was driving home after dropping her kids off at school when she noticed something was wrong with her car.

“The car just started getting Smokey," she said. "I had seen smoke coming from the back.”

She pulled into her driveway on Waveney Street and ran inside to get her husband.

“By the time he made it out, it was flames,” Carter said.

In a matter of minutes, the vacant home was filled with flames and the side of her house was on fire. Inside was her husband, teenage son and her baby girl.

An off-duty firefighter jumped in to help, yelling for Katrina’s husband to get out. Luckily, no one was injured.

“What ain’t fire damage is water damage, we basically just lost everything,” Carter said.

Jenny Manna of the American Red Cross arrived to see what the family may need.

“It’s their worst day and we want to be here to help them, support them,” Manna said.

Carter doesn’t know exactly how the fire started but she has a theory.

“It was something with a wire because I noticed it came from the back of the van and not from under the hood,” she added.