Five people are homeless after Henrico house fire - NBC12 - WWBT - Richmond, VA News On Your Side

Fire leaves mom, children homeless

HENRICO, VA (WWBT) -

A mother and her children are homeless after an early morning house fire in Henrico. 

Neighbors say crews battled flames several feet high on Cleary Road near Mechanicsville Turnpike.  

When the mom noticed the fire coming from this side of the home near the living room her biggest concern was getting her kids out safely. 

Sirens and flames filled the air early Saturday morning dimming the holiday spirit, but Jazzmine Rich and her family are just thankful they made it out safely.

"I guess this is God's way of letting me start fresh someway," said Rich.  

Rich was inside with her one year old twins, stepdaughter and brother when the flames and smothering smoke woke them up.  

"I went into the living room, and that's when I saw the smoke and an orange glow of it sparking on the right hand side of the house," Rich added.  

Next door neighbor Kelvin Balthrop, shot video when the fire was raging. The glow got him out of bed just before 4 a.m.  

"Flames were 20 to 30 feet high," Balthrop noted. "It's a scary feeling when you see it right next to home." 

Rich believes the fire sparked from the side of her home near the fuse box.  

"It just seems like the circuits just got overwhelmed and it just set fire," Rich said.  

She says she had several lamps and heaters plugged in, and Saturday afternoon Rich showed up to see what little she could salvage.  

"I thought I could try to come back and save something but it looks like everything is just gone," Rich added.  

Other than some of her brother's audio equipment, almost everything was reduced to charred pieces, but Rich continues to count her blessings that she and her family are okay.   

"I'm just glad everybody is safe at the end of the day," Rich noted.

Meanwhile, The American Red Cross is helping Rich and her family with living expenses.

Fire crews didn't say if the family had smoke detectors, but they continue to remind neighbors to check their batteries to make sure they work.  A cause is still under investigation.

Copyright 2012 WWBT NBC12. All rights reserved.

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