Elderly Woman Rescued From Fire in Townhome in Southwest Miami-Dade

Firefighters break down door to save woman trapped in fire

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    Miami-Dade Fire Rescue Battalion Chief Jose Herrera discusses the rescue of a woman who was trapped in her burning townhouse in southwest Miami-Dade. (Published Saturday, March 30, 2013)

    An elderly woman who was trapped inside her burning southwest Miami-Dade home was hospitalized after she was rescued by firefighters Friday night, officials said.

    The incident began when authorities received a report of a grass fire in the area of Southwest 132nd Street and 92nd Avenue around 10:15 p.m., Miami-Dade Fire Rescue Battalion Chief Jose Herrera said.

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    When firefighters arrived, they found a large amount of smoke and realized it wasn't a grass fire but was coming from a nearby townhome. Firefighters found the home had an iron gate which they had to break through, Herrera said.

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    Once the firefighters broke through the door, they found the woman, who is about 70, struggling to get out on the other side, Herrera said. She was rushed to a nearby hospital suffering from smoke inhalation but was in stable condition, Herrera said.

    After getting the woman out, firefighters found the blaze had "significantly spread" and was venting through a roof at the back of the townhouse, Herrera said.

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    Firefighters were able to extinguish the fire before it spread to any of the surrounding homes. The cause of the fire is under investigation, Herrera said.

    "When I came out there was a lot of smoke," next door neighbor Juloy Guerrero said. "I actually thought all the houses were gonna be burned down, it was a scary moment."

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