Off-duty firefighter saves child from burning home using garden hose

An off-obligation firefighter saved a 3-yr-outdated neighbor from her family’s burning property in Brooklyn — working with just a backyard hose, he recalled to The Article on Tuesday.

City Bravest Stefon Douglas, 33, explained he was headed household following performing at Engine 276 on Sunday evening when he spotted smoke “puffing from the rear of the household that was on hearth.

“I commenced operating toward a property,” he explained.

Douglas said he then remembered he experienced an oxygen mask and tank in his motor vehicle due to the fact he experienced lately utilised them as a prop for pupils at a college profession day.

“I grabbed [the equipment] from my trunk and set it on,” he reported.

Off-duty firefighter Stefon Douglas, 33, saved a 3-12 months-outdated neighbor from her family’s burning dwelling in Brooklyn.
Paul Martinka

At 1st, Douglas attempted to battle his way by means of the flames and smoke in the front of the home but did not have enough protecting gear, he said.

“I was just in a T-shirt, had shorts on and Crocs, and the warmth was just way way too a great deal and the home was way too huge to test to execute a research,” Douglas said.

So he determined to enter the home by means of the aspect and ran into a male there utilizing a back garden hose to check out to douse the flames, he mentioned. 

Off-duty firefighter Stefon Douglas with another FDNY member
Stefon Douglas (centre) used a back garden hose through the rescue.
Lloyd Mitchell

“I grabbed it from him,” Douglas said of the hose. “I asked him, ‘Do you consider anyone’s in the property?’ He explained, ‘There may be two individuals.’ ” 

Douglas mentioned he then place his thumb on the hose’s nozzle to check out to build more stress while shifting as near to the flames as the hose would make it possible for.

He mentioned he observed far more flames on the stove and skilled the drinking water on that. 

Then he read the woman.

House with firefighters standing in front of it
Douglas, 33, was headed dwelling immediately after functioning at Engine 276 on Sunday evening when he spotted smoke billowing from the Brooklyn house.
Wayne Carrington

“I began to listen to whimpering, like a tiny cry,” he claimed. 

He followed the cry and finished up in what turned out to be a lavatory. He was unable to see a great deal by means of the thick smoke but managed to come across the crying tot, who was naked and crouched on the floor involving the rest room and sink.

“I grabbed her,” he reported. “I handed her off to the guy at the doorway.”

Douglas then picked the backyard hose back up and ongoing to search for the likely 2nd trapped man or woman. It turns out the child’s mom was nevertheless in the home. She afterwards died from injuries from the blaze.

“I just made use of the hose to preserve the fireplace from extending to one more space or just at any time it received far too shut,” Douglas claimed of his frantic search for a 2nd man or woman.

Ladder 159 finally arrived and tapped him out.

Citizen video shows a young girl being rushed to an ambulance after being pulled from a fire in her home.
The child’s mother afterwards died from accidents sustained all through the blaze.

“[Other firefighters] were being on the lookout at me very strange simply because they had been like, ‘How does this guy have on a mask?’ ” Douglas mentioned. “But they didn’t know me until finally I took off my mask, and they had been like, ‘Whoa, Steph. What ended up you undertaking here?’ ”

They have been shocked to listen to he saved the kid, he reported.

“When I received outdoors, my mother and my sister were being there, and they are hunting at me like ‘What did you just do?’ ” he recalled. 

The small female was rushed to the medical center in critical affliction but has considering that pulled out of the woods and will endure, authorities stated. Her mom was discovered in a bedroom more in the home’s inside and later on died, officers mentioned.

Douglas claimed he felt bad that he wasn’t able to conserve the mom but considers it divine intervention that he was there to help save the child.

Usually, he would have been at get the job done at the time of the blaze, he reported, but he had to take his mom to surgical procedure in the early morning, so he was returning house earlier.

“It just keeps playing in my head,” he said. “It just transpired that God aligned it so perfectly that I was heading property and received on my block at that particular second.”