ANDERSON — Arletha Strawther was more than 10 blocks away from her home Tuesday when her son called to tell her that something smelled like it was burning in the house.
“I told him to get outside and call the fire department,” Strawther said later from a hotel room at the Super 8 in Anderson. “He did not call the fire department.”
Malik Boards, 17, was at home in the 1000 block of Arrow Avenue, with his 8-year-old sister, Makayla Fields, when he thought he smelled something funny, Strawther said.
Strawther raced home with her 16-year-old son Tyreze Stamps and immediately called the fire department, but it was too late. There were already flames inside the home causing heavy damage.
David Sokol, battalion chief for the Anderson Fire Department, said the department was dispatched at 4:50 p.m. The blaze, which the department was able to have under control by 7: 37 p.m., displaced the children and their mother.
“Our guys did a great job,” Sokol said of the 4-minute response time.
No one was injured in the fire and the family, who has relatives in the area, was assisted by the Red Cross.
“It all happened so fast,” Strawther said. “There is a lot of damage in my daughter’s room and the attic. It will be awhile before I can go back. It got dark on us so we don’t know how much damage there is.”
Sokol said the fire is under investigation.
Like Traci L. Moyer on Facebook and follow her @moyyer on Twitter, or call 648-4250.