Family of 5 displaced, dog missing, after early-morning house fire

Barbecue pit believed to be source of fire

A family of five has been displaced due to a fire early Wednesday morning that destroyed their far West Bexar County home.

SAN ANTONIO – A family of five has been displaced due to a fire early Wednesday morning that destroyed their far West Bexar County home.

The fire, which sent huge flames and smoke into the air in the area near Loop 1604 and Potranco Road, also may have claimed the family’s pet dog.

RELATED: Barbecue grill to blame for house fire in West Bexar County

According to Bexar County firefighters, it was that dog’s barking that alerted the people to the fire around 4:30 a.m.

Fire crews arrived and quickly went on the attack.

Firefighters from a number of different fire stations were called in to help. (KSAT 12 News)

“The initial crews arrived on scene to heavy fire in the rear of the structure,” said Capt. Salvador Butcher with Bexar County ESD #2. “When we tried to go in and put the fire out, we were met with heavy fire.”

Crews had to make a quick retreat and fight the fire strictly from the outside.

With the help of an aerial ladder truck, they were able to extinguish the fire after about an hour.

Firefighters used an aerial ladder truck as they fought the fire strictly from outside the home. (KSAT 12 News)

“It appears that it started on the deck,” Butcher said. “There is a barbecue pit that may not have been extinguished completely.”

A woman who told KSAT 12 News that she lived in the home admitted that she and her family recently had a cookout.

Firefighters said although five people live in the home, only three –the woman and two children—were there when the fire broke out.

Because the homes on that street are relatively close together, some nearby neighbors worried the fire might spread to their homes.

Several of them evacuated on their own as a precaution.

Later, they were able to return. Firefighters said there did not appear to be any damage to any homes other than the one where the fire started.

Butcher said this fire should be a reminder of the care people need to take when cooking outdoors.

“If you are grilling, be sure the fire is out,” Butcher said. “Keep the embers away from the house. Don’t just put them in your trash can.”

About the Authors:

Katrina Webber joined KSAT 12 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.