HILLSBORO, Ore. – A family of eight managed to escape and early morning house fire in Hillsboro Wednesday but the family dog was lost in the blaze, officials said.
Firefighters responded to a 911 call at 1195 SE Alder St. just after 6 a.m. and found heavy smoke coming from the front door of a small home, according to Bruce Montgomery of Hillsboro Fire and Rescue.
The father of the household, 52-year-old Carlos Santos, told investigators he opened the door to the home’s converted garage and saw tall flames and black smoke. He got all seven of his family members out of the home.
His 26-year-old son, Solomon, tried to go back into the home to get the family’s mixed-breed dog but Solomon wouldn’t let him go back inside. The dog died in the fire.
The fire was caused by carelessly discarded cigarettes, Montgomery said. It caused around $80,000 in damage.
"This fire could have been contained to the room where it started," said Investigator Martin Stapleton. "Had the homeowner closed that door as he left to evacuate the family, most of the heat and smoke would have stayed in that room."
The Oregon Trail Chapter of the American Red Cross was working with the family to provide housing, clothes and other essential items.