Possible gas leak puncture causes fire at South Lake Tahoe mobile home park | TahoeDailyTribune.com

Possible gas leak puncture causes fire at South Lake Tahoe mobile home park

Jonah M. Kessel / Tahoe Daily TribuneFirefighters try to extinguish a mobile home that caught on fire after a gas line was possibly punctured. A child was taken to the hospital for observations

A South Lake Tahoe mobile home tenant who tried to unfreeze his water pipes says he may have accidentally cut a gas line, which erupted into a ball of fire tonight, causing major damage to the structure.

As flames and smoke collected in the crawlspace of unit 55 at the Heavenly Valley Mobile Estates, Rosendo Amaya, 47, ran into his home, grabbed his 3-year-old son who was sleeping in a room that had filled with smoke, and called 911. The call came into dispatch at 5:59 p.m.

“I tried to throw snow on it but it was coming out too fast, so I ran inside and called for help,” said Amaya, a 13-year resident of the complex, located off of Pioneer Trail and Blackwood. “My first thought was, ‘My son. I got to get him out.'”

His son, Rosendo, who suffers from asthma, was inside the smoke-filled bedroom at the time of the fire and was choking, Amaya said. The child was taken to the hospital for evaluation. No one else was home at the time.

Firefighters remained at the scene of the blaze tonight and appeared to have knock it down, however, crews had to call in a water truck because the fire hydrants were covered in 20-foot high snow berms.

The grounds of the mobile home complex had been plowed Monday, a day after several residents said they complained to managers that they were trapped by the heavy snow inside the mobile home park. Some residents said they doubted fire trucks could have gotten into the fire if it had happened on Sunday.

Several firetrucks were dispatched to the mobile home park, however, some could not get through because of the narrow streets. A firefighter at the scene said moving through the snow and not finding gas and electric safety valves caused problems getting to the fire. But once a water truck arrived, the crews were able to get water on the flames.

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