ENOCH, Iron County — An Enoch resident who lost at least 10 of her pet cats in a residential fire Tuesday afternoon says the fact that the house had experienced flooding two days earlier was a blessing.
Michelle Pritchard, who lives in the home with her 84-year-old mother, said that after Sunday's flood, which sent a significant amount of backed-up sewer water into their basement, her mother had gone to stay with a friend in Cedar City.
"She's not very mobile, so I stayed here in the house and I took her to my friend's house where they had an extra bedroom to put her up in," Pritchard said. "And that was a blessing, because I don't know if I could have gotten her out (of the fire)."
Pritchard said she had been standing on her front porch early Tuesday afternoon while two flood recovery workers who had just finished their lunch break were putting on their gear and preparing to enter the home to continue their work in the basement. Unbeknownst to any of them, a fire had suddenly broken out in the kitchen.
Pritchard, whom neighbors say is a loving caregiver and rescuer of cats, told Cedar City News that when she opened up the front door, a cloud of "big, black toxic smoke" came pouring out.