Family jumps out window to escape house fire

Harris County fire marshal working to determine cause

HIGHLANDS, Texas - A grandmother, her daughter and two grandchildren escaped a house fire in east Harris County Friday by jumping out of a window.

Mary Smith, 74, shares the mobile home on North 11th Street near Clear Lake Road in the Highlands with her daughter, Elizabeth Smith, and grandsons.

Elizabeth Smith said the fire started on the porch shortly after 12 a.m.

She initially tried to put it out with a fire extinguisher, but when she realized it was spreading, she called for help. Her family was trapped inside.

The quick-thinking grandmother got the children to the kitchen window and tossed them out, then jumped for her life.

The mother suffered burns on her arms and hands. The grandmother and the children were not hurt.


"I guess from using the fire extinguisher, it was so hot, so I have burns all the way up my arms," Elizabeth Smith said.

"My son died two weeks and I broke my foot. Now this," Mary Smith said.

Two dogs perished in the fire.

It took the Highlands Volunteer Fire Department more than an hour to put out the blaze. The family's home is a total loss.

The flames were so intense, they melted the siding off a neighboring mobile home.

The cause of the fire is not yet known.

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