Family of 6 escapes burning home

Published: Sep. 22, 2020 at 5:59 AM MDT
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FOUNTAIN, Colo. (KKTV) - A family is safe after a frantic escape from a burning home Tuesday morning.

“It was 2:30 in the morning and I heard popping noises, but I thought it was Fort Carson because we live so close,” mother Tanisha Tankersley told 11 News. “I walked out in the hallway and my daughter’s entire window was inflamed with fire. And all of [the kids] were in different rooms and different areas of the house.”

Tankersley and her partner ran to their four children and got them out of the house as the fire rapidly spread.

“I see the front of the house catch fire and my car started to explode, so we took them out through the back of the house. And her window [gestures at daughter] was locked, so we were trying to get her out, and we ended up running through the back and running through the side of the house.”

Tankersley said her family ran to neighboring homes for help.

“We just knocked on multiple doors screaming, because as we were at the neighbor’s house nearest us, the cars were exploding, so blasts are going everywhere, so we started knocking there but it was so close it scared me with the baby and kids, so I told them to run as far from the house as they could."

By the time firefighters reached the scene in Daffodil Street, the cars were engulfed in flames and much of the front of the house was on fire, exactly where Tankersley’s children sleep.

“The two furthest windows to the right that are burned are the kids' bedrooms,” she said.

Firefighters began a blitz attack.

“Started hitting the fire from the outside of the structure. Completely did a 360 around the structure, found a majority of the fire was just contained to the front side of the structure," said Capt. Rick Daniels with the Fountain Fire Department.

Tragic scene out of Fountain this morning after a fire. Thankfully no one was hurt. Kasia Kerridge - KKTV 11 News has been there all morning.

Posted by KKTV 11 News on Tuesday, September 22, 2020

Firefighters said it was extremely fortunate the neighboring homes didn’t catch on fire.

“So what happens is a lot of times when a house is fully involved like this one was, you get exposures like to the houses next door. The heat from that fire starts to melt the other side of the other structures, the siding on the structures and stuff like that. When we got here, we had that handled by different crews taking care of the other structures so that they didn’t catch on fire as well,” Daniels said.

The cause of the fire remains under investigation but it appears to have started outside the home," a spokesperson with the Fountain Police Department said. It is believed to be accidental.

The house is currently unlivable, though firefighters didn’t yet know if it would be a total loss. Now the family is trying to get on their feet: get clothes for their infant, food for the kids, and other necessities.

“We have tons of neighbors that are helpful,” she said.

The family is also working with the Red Cross to find a place to stay. Relatives have set up a GoFundMe to help the family with any financial difficulties. Click here if you wish to donate.

Even with so much lost, the family is grateful to be safe, unharmed and together.

“It was scary because they were in different areas of the house, and to think that one of them wouldn’t make it is really scary," Tankersley said, voice breaking.

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