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Del Valle Man Rescued From Overnight House Fire
A man is rescued from a house fire in Southeast Travis County. It sparked around 12:30 a.m. Monday on Chalet Drive in Del Valle, just east of the Circuit of the Americas track. The fire sent a man to the burn hospital in San Antonio, it completely destroyed the home, and now the fire marshal’s investigators are trying to figure out what sparked it.
It happened around 12:30 a.m. Crews found flames spilling out of both stories. Fire crews said the two biggest challenges: getting enough water into the area and figuring out who all had been accounted for inside the home. Neighbors had told them the man there had made it out, but later they believe he had gone back in for valuables. They found him unconscious on the floor. Though they had to go defensive at one point, they knocked out the fire within 10 minutes, but a tree catching fire and flying embers meant a close call for people living nearby.
“Windows are popping,” recalled Thomas Armonta, who lives next door and called 911. “You hear em popping like popcorn.”
“The embers were already starting to fly over, and they (deputies) said ‘You just need to get out now,’” recalls Celia Armonta, Thomas’ wife. “I just grabbed my wallet, my keys, grabbed my kids, and we were out, and just some jackets for them. That was it.”
Officials believe the man was alone in the house. They don’t know his condition but said he suffered from smoke inhalation and thermal-related injuries.
Crews from four fire departments battled the fire. Officials don’t have a damage estimate.
By Adam Bennett