Fire destroys Glendale home, sends firefighter to hospital

A fire destroyed a Glendale home early Thursday morning, leaving several residents displaced and a firefighter in the hospital.

The flames sparked from debris in the backyard and spread into the home in a neighborhood near 51st Avenue and Thunderbird, said Linda Rider with Glendale Fire.

"The fire went defensive and crews did a great job keeping the fire from extending to other houses," said Rider.

The four people living in the home were able to get out with their dog and tortoise, and they are expected to be okay, fire officials said.

A firefighter was treated on scene and taken to the hospital as a precautionary measure.

Illegal fireworks ruled out as cause of fire

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A fire burns a Glendale home.

Large illegal fireworks were reportedly found across the street and were initially investigated as a possible cause of the fire. 

"After receiving additional information during the investigation, fireworks have been removed as a possible cause of this fire," Glendale Fire tweeted.

Authorities also say the "excessive" amount of property and debris around the home made it difficult for firefighters to navigate around.

"We remind everyone to keep their backyards clear of debris and maintain a clutter-free living space to prevent fires and make it easier for first responders to do their job," read a statement from Glendale Fire on Twitter.

Family left without a home

I'm not even sure what time it was, like I said I was asleep. I woke up to one of the girls in the house saying, ‘Hey, we got a fire, we’re on fire,' which I got dressed and ran outside," said Jeff.

Jeff has lived here for more than 10 years. He didn't want to show his face or use his name, but he says he wasn't leaving without his dog, Peak.

"I went in and rounded him up and brought him outside and these guys over here have someone coming for him," he said.

Lisa Martin runs a non-profit called Companion Pets in Crisis.

"It’s so important because pets are family and we’re here," she said. "We have a fire department, the crisis responders, the Red Cross to help the families, but nobody’s here to help the pet."

Martin provides all of the essentials – dog food, bowls, a crate, a leash and a collar. She helps the displaced find a pet-friendly hotel to say in. Martin established Companion Pets in Crisis in 2019.

"Lately, the fires have been incredible," she said. "Last Sunday, we went on three fires in one day, so we can go from one or two fires [a] week to two fires a day. It’s just been really busy season for us."

Jeff is grateful for the help and relieved himself, Peak and his roommates made it out alive. He says even though he likely lost everything, he has what matters most – his dog. 

Area where the fire started: