Man saves pregnant woman from house fire in Chattanooga

Man saves pregnant woman from house fire in Chattanooga

February 16th, 2011 by Staff Report in News

Staff Photo by Angela Lewis/Chattanooga Times Free Press Chattanooga firefighters spray Class A foam on a house Monday at 1905 E. 13th St. to keep the fire from rekindling. The cause of the fire is unknown.

Firefighters are crediting a Chattanooga man with saving the life of a pregnant woman when fire broke out in her home Tuesday.

Andre Sharpe, 26, told firefighters that he and a friend spotted the fire around 1:30 p.m. at the house at 1905 E. 13th St., according to the Chattanooga Fire Department spokesman Bruce Garner. A woman fleeing the house told Sharpe that another woman was trapped inside, Garner said

Sharpe told officials he broke out a bedroom window with his fists, lifted the woman out and carried her to the front porch of a neighboring house.

The pregnant woman, identified as Angela Vasquez, 21, was taken to Erlanger hospital. She is five months pregnant.

Garner said the woman was being treated for relatively minor cuts and abrasions. Sharpe was treated on the scene by paramedics for cuts to both hands, Garner said.

The Chattanooga Fire Department got the call for the fire at 1:39 p.m. and responded with several fire companies. Most were at another fire call near East Lake Courts, but several managed to get to the East 13th Street scene within seven minutes, Garner said.

Garner said the house was nearly engulfed in flames when the firefighters arrived, and fire was spreading to a neighboring house.

The blaze was contained to the one house and spared the house next door, but the burned house is considered a total loss, he said.

Chattanooga police said they received initial reports of a disorder at the house before a fire was reported. Garner said those reports may or may not have anything to do with the cause of the fire, which is under investigation by Lt. Henry McElvain with the fire investigation division.

The house reportedly had seven residents, including several children, Garner said.