MIAMI (CBS4) – A Miami family is safe thanks to an 11-year old boy who helped them escape a smoky fire in their home.
The fire broke out around 2 a.m. in a bedroom in the residence at 3110 NW 22nd Court; inside the room four children, ages 6, 8, 11 and 13, were asleep. Miami Fire Rescue spokesman Ignatius Carroll said the fire started in a wall air conditioning unit and spread to bed where 11-year old Alex Giutta slept. As smoke filled the room, the other children started coughing which woke Alex up. When he saw his bed on fire, he screamed for his father Angel Velasquez.
“Wake up, the fire is up,” Alex said screamed to his father. “Then I told him the air conditioner was on fire, then I got scared and woke everyone up.”
Alex and his father, his mother, two brothers, a sister and a cousin got outside to safety. Alex’s mother Karla then helped Nancy Martinez and her 88-year old mother Carman Canals, who lived in a rental unit behind the house, to safety.
“I was very scared for her not to be able to get out and she came and helped me get her out,” said Martinez.
“I was afraid I was going to die,” said Canals.
Angel Velasquez said he tried to put the fire out himself. After dragging the burning mattress outside, he went back in but was forced to leave because of the intense heat and smoke.
Fire investigators believe the cause of the fire was electrical in nature.
The family is receiving assistance from the Red Cross.