Several pets have gone missing after a house fire in SE Houston, which was likely started by a space heater.
Around 10:45 p.m. on Thursday, a fire was reported on Bonner Street near Radcliffe.
As he stood in front of what was left of his home, ABC13 reporter Courtney Fischer spoke with Mike, the homeowner. Stella, his dog, would not leave his side.
His neighbors delivered coffee and a cooked breakfast to him.
Mike, a Vietnam veteran, had been a resident of the home since 1984. He claims that he uses room heaters whenever there is a chilly spell.
He stated he put a space heater in the back bedroom approximately 10:30 p.m. on Thursday. He desired to keep his animals warm.
A METRO bus was dispatched to the area to keep firemen warm as they battled the blazes in the bitter co
Mike speculated, I think it started there because that's where I put the space heater last night.
He was the sole occupant of the house, which he shared with eight dogs and four cats.
His house was filled with smoke and fire when he awoke. A neighbor knocked on his door to warn him about the fire.
He made it out safely, but he's only been able to locate four of his dogs since the fire.
I had smoke detectors, but I'm not sure if the one in the kitchen went off or not, Mike explained.
Mike only thought about his dogs when the temperature dropped into the 20s. He stated that he would go to great lengths to keep them warm.
Now is not the time for them to be chilly. I don't want to be apart from them, but it's in their best interests. I need them to be in a more secure location than this he stated
Mike worked as a METRO bus driver for many years. He worked for the City of Houston for nearly two decades as a bus driver.
He has a lot of aid from his neighbors and friends in the community. In addition, the Red Cross will assist him in finding a place to stay tonight.
When utilizing a space heater, experts recommend taking the following precautions:
Anything that can catch fire should be kept at least three feet away from the heater.
The heater should be plugged into a wall outlet rather than a power strip.
Before retiring to bed, remember to turn off the heating.