Neighbors describe rescue of man from fire, explosion in Southeast Side home

Problem with gas line triggered fire, investigators say

A Southeast Side man is in the hospital being treated for burns after being pulled from his burning home Sunday night.

SAN ANTONIO, TEXAS – A Southeast Side man is in the hospital being treated for burns after being pulled from his burning home Sunday night.

Neighbors in the 1700 block of E. Highland Boulevard reported hearing what sounded like an explosion shortly after 9:30 p.m.

Neighbors rescue man from burning home after hearing explosion, firefighters say

Maria Gonzalez, who lives across the street, said she felt her windows and walls rattle.

“My husband goes, ‘Maybe they hit the pole or something over there, a car accident. But when we opened the door, the house was already in flames,” she said.

Gonzalez said she quickly called 911, while her husband and son grabbed their shoes and ran toward the trouble.

She said they knew right away, based on a pickup parked in the driveway, that someone most likely was inside the burning home and needed help getting out.

“My husband and my son they went in there through the back and took out the man. He was on the floor with burns,” she said. “You could see his skin, you know? It was sad.”

East Highland fire, explosion image (KSAT)

That man was rushed to a hospital for treatment.

Monday morning, there was no update available on his condition.

According to Gonzalez, the man is one of three seniors who recently moved into the home.

She said it appears that he was the only person home at the time, although her husband and son also rescued a puppy from the fire.

Investigators believe a problem with a gas line started the fire.

In a written statement, a spokesman for the San Antonio Fire Department said that while the leaking area had since been capped, the entire gas line would need to be replaced.

About the Authors:

Katrina Webber joined KSAT 11 in December 2009. She reports for Good Morning San Antonio. Katrina was born and raised in Queens, NY, but after living in Gulf Coast states for the past decade, she feels right at home in Texas. It's not unusual to find her singing karaoke or leading a song with her church choir when she's not on-air.

Tim has been a photojournalist and video editor at KSAT since 1998. He came to San Antonio from Lubbock, where he worked in TV and earned his bachelor's degree in Electronic Media and Communication from Texas Tech University. Tim has won a handful of awards and has earned a master's in Strategic Communication and Innovation from Tech as well.