Investigation begins into SWMD house fire

SOUTHWEST MIAMI-DADE, FLA. (WSVN) - Fire investigators are looking into what set a Southwest Miami-Dade home on fire, Monday morning.

The house fire took place near Southwest 18th Street and Southwest 62nd Avenue where Miami-Dade Fire Rescue extinguished the flames.

The family said a fire alarm saved them once a room went up in flames at around 4:30 a.m.

The homeowner’s daughter-in-law, Maria Lichterman Fernandez, said the fire began in her father-in-law’s bedroom.

Fernandez said she could hear screaming. “My mother-in-law started screaming, so we woke up,” she said. “We have fire alarm systems, thank God, that go off and start screaming, ‘Fire, fire, fire.’”

Fernandez ran throughout the home, waking everybody up as quickly as she could. “Thankfully, we were able to get everybody out, including my daughter who has the back bedroom and our three little dogs,” she said, “so everybody made it out alive.”

The family tried to battle the flames using a hose. “We went back inside, my husband especially, with a hose,” said Fernandez. “The flames were too big to be contained.”

The extent of the damage remains unknown. The family was seen outside the home attempting to salvage anything from the home.

No injuries were reported. “The good news is life is irreplaceable, and we all made it out alive,” said Fernandez. “We’re here to see another holiday, so material things we can always replace. We can replace everything inside the house, but our lives – thank God we are here.”

The American Red Cross was on the scene and said they will help the family find housing while the home is being repaired.

The cause of the fire remains unknown, but officials believe it may be due to something electrical.

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