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3 people hurt, 6 dogs dead in double house fire in Phoenix

Rey Quinones suffered severe burns trying to rescue his dogs from a house fire in north Phoenix on Friday.
Published: May. 20, 2022 at 10:02 AM MST
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PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) - A fast-moving fire consumed two homes in north Phoenix, killing six dogs and injuring three people. Fire officials say crews responded to the fire near 20th Street and Sweetwater Avenue around 9 a.m. Firefighters arrived and encountered heavy smoke and flames coming from a home. Firefighters quickly searched for anyone inside and tried to protect nearby homes and buildings.

“We just tried to help,” Jesse Goodman said. Goodman lives around the corner and said he’d just dropped his daughter off at school when he saw the fire and stopped to help. “We’re trying to pound on the window to let him know your house is on fire,” he explained.

The fire spread to a second home. Those inside said their dogs alerted them to it. “This morning was just too unreal for me,” Rey Quinones said.

He was taken to a nearby hospital for second and third-degree burns on his arm. Quinones said he was injured when he went back into the home to rescue his seven dogs, but only one made it out. He had to jump out of a window to escape the flames. “From what I’ve had to go through this morning losing my dogs, trying to save my dogs and not being able to save them and being hopeless when they tried saving me,” he said.

Two women from the neighboring home were also injured; one suffered burns to her ankle and another smoke inhalation. Both were released soon after.

The Phoenix Fire Department posted a video from the scene, showing large plumes of smoke coming off the fire. Fire officials say it’s too early to determine what caused the fire but say when firefighters arrived, they had to deal with exploding propane tanks and downed power lines. Officials say 40 firefighters responded to fight the blaze, and none were hurt during the incident.

Firefighters say the fire quickly spread to a nearby house and other buildings.

Phoenix Fire says to never go back into a burning building once you’re out. “We understand animals are apart of the family. That’s our job to go in and get those animals; we’ll get them if they’re survivable,” said Captain Rob McDade.

Quinones and the other homeowner were at the scene most of the day on Friday, trying to salvage as much as possible. “I know the community usually rallies around people when things like this do happen. We are humans, and we do take care of our own,” said Quinones.

The family has set up a GoFundMe. If you would like to donate, click here.

Editor’s Note: Arizona’s Family news staff updated the story to reflect three people were hurt and six dogs died. Originally, it was reported two people were injured and four dogs died.