SA homeowner mourns 2 dogs killed in Southwest Side house fire

Space heater knocked over by dog, officials say

SAN ANTONIO – A San Antonio homeowner is mourning his two dogs and rethinking his use of space heaters after his home was destroyed in a fire.

San Antonio fire crews were called to the 1200 block of West Southcross Boulevard before 7 p.m. Tuesday for a house fire.

Daniel Lugo, the homeowner, said he went to the store for a few minutes and got a call from his neighbors about his home being on fire.

“They tried to turn it off. They had two fire extinguishers and the hose from the back,” Lugo said.

It was too late. His concern when he got to his home were his two dogs, but they didn’t make it. 

Lugo said he knew the warnings about space heaters.

“I knew it, but I didn’t think it would happen to me,” he said. “Everyone thinks it's not going to happen to you, but it is going to happen to you. It happened to us. These space heaters, yeah, they keep you warm, man, but I’d rather be cold now.”

San Antonio Fire Battalion Chief Russell Johnson said the space heaters were left apart and away from flammable objects, but it seems a dog knocked one over and started the fire. He said numerous house fires over the last couple of days have kept crews busy. Almost all are linked to the cold temperatures and heating sources.

“In San Antonio — San Antonio is a 300-year-old city — there’s a lot of old houses. The electrical grid can't hold it,” he said about the number of electrical fires.

Johnson urges people to buy new space heaters that turn off if they fall over. Space heaters should be plugged into the wall and not extension cords.

The San Antonio Fire Department has responded to about 300 structure fire calls since Thanksgiving.

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