Firefighters put out house fire in Bay Harbor Islands; home deemed unsafe

BAY HARBOR ISLANDS, FLA. (WSVN) - Firefighters have extinguished a fire that broke out at a house in Bay Harbor Islands that has been a couple’s home for 45 years.

The fire that, officials said, broke out at the property on the 9500 block of Broadview Terrace just before 9 a.m. on Friday, has left the structure unsafe.

Neighbors said they were startled out of bed by the commotion.

“We were sleeping still and then we started hearing trucks coming, and this is a very, very quiet neighborhood, so usually there’s no noise,” said neighbor Gerardo Fetterman. “Then we woke up and heard all the noise and everything, so we came out to see what was happening, and the home was on fire.”

“I came outside, and I saw all the flames, the red flames out of the house, and I was shaking,” said neighbor Ligia Lustgarten.

Cellphone footage showed the blaze moments before rescue crews were able to contain the fire.

7SkyForce HD hovered over the scene where thick smoke could be seen coming from the roof of the house’s garage.

“[The flames] were going through the roof, mainly through the roof and through the windows of the second floor,” said Fetterman.

It took crews several hours to put out the flames. They left the home at around 3 p.m.

Friday afternoon, 7News cameras showed the garage with heavy damage. A friend of the older couple who lives at the home said a family room is located right next to the garage, and several rooms are located above it.

The couple’s friend said they were sleeping when the fire broke out.

No injuries were reported, and neighbors said the couple was able to escape safely.

“We were really, really worried about them. The fire was very, very, very hard,” said Fetterman.

“I am very happy. I’ve known them for 45 years,” said Lustgarten. “They are our friends, not our neighbors, our friends.”

The couple’s friend said they are doing OK.

Officials did not specify the exact location where the blaze started, but it was somewhere on the left hand side of the house.

The cause of the fire remains under investigation.

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