CHESTERFIELD, VA (WWBT) - A family of five is safe after escaping from an early morning house fire on Chesdin Ridge Drive in Chesterfield County. The fire broke out around 2:30 a.m.
From a distance, it doesn't look so bad, but get up close and you can truly see the damage. A burnt playground and scorched big wheel showcase this was a family's home.
Fortunately the quick actions of Chris and Melissa Smart allowed them to save themselves, their three children, all under the age of five, and two family pets.
"I woke up in the middle of the night and smelt smoke, so I was checking the rooms, and my five year old had already woke up too," said Melissa Smart. "I didn't see any fire, so I went down the steps and I seen a fire out of the window on our front porch, so we ran back upstairs and grabbed the kids and by the time we got outside, the house was already up in flames."
Her husband Chris said only one thing went through his mind when he realized his house was going up in flames.
"Just get my kids out of the house -- make sure everyone got out safe," he said.
Now, the smarts say they will try and pick up the pieces -- and explain to their kids what's happened.
"They understood to get out, they just don't quite understand," Melissa said. "They are worried about their toys and stuff like that, but they don't quite understand the whole thing."
Firefighters battled this fire for several hours, but their fight wasn't as hard as it's been for the past few weeks. The temperature was a little warmer, so while they still dealt with black ice on the driveway, no hoses froze as they worked to douse the flames.
The Smarts said that they are already dreaming of eventual plans to rebuild here.