Berkeley Co. house fire injures 2 children, firefighters, neighbor

Berkeley Co. house fire injures 2 children, firefighters, neighbor
Source: Tina Higgins
Source: Tina Higgins
Source: Live 5
Source: Live 5

BERKELEY COUNTY, SC (WCSC) - Two children and three adults were injured in a Berkeley County house fire Tuesday morning, authorities say.

A toddler remains in critical condition at MUSC following the fire at a home on Waterloo Drive in the Overton neighborhood which is just north of Moncks Corner.

The toddler's 6-year-old sister was also transported in stable condition to Trident Medical Center, according to Berkeley County EMS Director Dan Barb.

In addition, two firefighters were also hospitalized for heat exhaustion after working to control the fire, and a neighbor who apparently tried to help battle the fire was also hospitalized, Barb said.

Another neighbor, Tina Higgins, said she attempted to perform CPR on one of the children after they were pulled from the fire.

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The call about the fire came in at approximately 9:39 a.m. Tuesday, Barb said.

Neighbors said they learned during the incident that there was a baby inside.

"Somebody hollered there was a kid in there," said Cliff Northum, a neighbor."Two or three guys went in, couldn't find the kid."

Another neighbor who's a nurse also tried to get inside the house.

"She busted out a window, smoke was so thick she couldn't get in there," said Donna Kerns who lives nearby.

Authorities say the baby boy's father was not home when the fire broke out, but was in the neighborhood looking for his dog that got loose.

A resident brought him back to the house.

"No sense in running into a smoke filled house if you don't know where the kid is and by that time the daddy shows up," Northum said."Evidently he knew where the kid was. He came out carrying the kid."

"He ran in the house, found the baby, brought the baby out," Kerns said."The baby was not breathing, was unconscious, nothing."

Officials say a nurse who earlier tried to rescue the baby performed CPR and got him breathing again. He was taken to Trident Medical Center then to MUSC.

The 6-year-old girl who got out of the house, was taken to Trident. Officials say she will be okay.

One of the neighbors who tried to rescue the boy also was taken to the hospital and is expected to be okay.

Santee Circle Volunteer Fire Chief Robert Winn said agents with the South Carolina State Law Enforcement Division have been called in to investigate the fire.

Firefighters from as many as six different departments responded.

Many of the firefighters who responded are volunteers and at least one of them is as young as 17 years old, according to firefighters on the scene.

The house is a total loss, fire officials said.

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