Lifestyle & Human Interest

Doorbell Camera Captures Moment Neighbors Rescue Woman from Roof of Burning Home


It’s amusing that naps, one of the things you resist the most as a child, become something wonderful as you get older. There are few things a short nap can’t fix, though most of us don’t take advantage of them nearly as often as we could.

The only problem with lying down for a bit is that sometimes it can leave you disoriented. There’s a very small specific window of time that a nap can take up before it becomes sleep and you wake up groggy rather than refreshed.

The other downfall is that napping leaves you unaware of your surroundings, which can become a problem if a fire starts.

That was what happened to one woman in Clarksburg, West Virginia, on March 26. She went upstairs for a nap, but at around 2 p.m., disaster struck.

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Though six people, a dog and a cat lived in the home, only the pets and the woman were home at the time. Thankfully, the smoke alarm woke her up, and she crawled out onto the roof to escape the flames.

The Ring doorbell camera across the street caught the whole thing. Some neighbors drove by, spotted the smoke and the stranded woman, and rushed down the street to find a place to park their vehicle before getting out to help.

“Early this afternoon fire fighters were dispatched for a working house fire on Fairview Ave.,” the Clarksburg Fire Department shared on March 26. “The only occupant home at the time was asleep on the second floor with her bedroom door closed.”

“She was awoken by the smoke detectors and made it out on her porch roof after going through zero visibility conditions.

“Two quick thinking neighbors were able to rescue her prior to the fire department arriving. Working smoke detectors and closed bedroom doors save lives.”

Clarksburg Fire Department Chief Rick Scott told The Exponent Telegram that the fire “doesn’t appear to be anything other than an accident,” and that he’s been in touch with the woman and the others who lived in the home.

“I spoke with her yesterday, and the Red Cross is helping them out,” Scott said. “They gave them some vouchers and have put them up until they are able to find someplace to rent.”

Sadly, the dog died in the fire and there has been no sign of the cat. “It’s still missing,” Scott said. “Hopefully it ran out of there.”

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He also made a plug for the importance of smoke detectors.

“If people can’t afford them then we work with the Red Cross to help provide them,” Scott said.

“The newer ones have 10-year batteries in them and they are sealed so the batteries can’t be taken out. If people get the newest ones then that is best.”

The woman’s sister posted a thank you to the rescuers on Facebook, according to the Daily Mail. One of the rescuers, Darick Hibbs, replied, “I did just what I feel I was put on earth to do, an that’s to help people in need. I’m just glad the lady was able to get out!!”

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Amanda holds an MA in Rhetoric and TESOL from Cal Poly Pomona. After teaching composition and logic for several years, she's strayed into writing full-time and especially enjoys animal-related topics.
As of January 2019, Amanda has written over 1,000 stories for The Western Journal but doesn't really know how. Graduating from California State Polytechnic University with a MA in Rhetoric/Composition and TESOL, she wrote her thesis about metacognitive development and the skill transfer between reading and writing in freshman students.
She has a slew of interests that keep her busy, including trying out new recipes, enjoying nature, discussing ridiculous topics, reading, drawing, people watching, developing curriculum, and writing bios. Sometimes she has red hair, sometimes she has brown hair, sometimes she's had teal hair.
With a book on productive communication strategies in the works, Amanda is also writing and illustrating some children's books with her husband, Edward.
Austin, Texas
Languages Spoken
English und ein bißchen Deutsch
Topics of Expertise
Faith, Animals, Cooking