Fire Department Investigates Confusion on House Fire

Fire Department Investigates Confusion on House Fire

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Samantha Hayes Reporting After several calls to 911 went unanswered a South Jordan family waited for help and watched as their house burned right in front of them. Confusion at the dispatch center left one family waiting for help in the worst of circumstances -- a house fire.

The grid system in the Salt Lake Valley usually makes giving directions a pretty cut and dry procedure. But last night when two calls came in at the same time, the east and west coordinates of the two addresses were confused. And the home with the real fire was left burning.

7:00 Sunday night smoke was pouring out of the attached garage just few feet from the house. The first one to notice was the 6-year old son of John and Connie Sanine.

John Sanine, Home Owner: “By the time we got there the fire was too big to put out with any kind of garden hose."

The family says no one answered when they called 911.

Alexis Sanine, Daughter: “You just panic, you don't know what to do because its all happening so quickly."

Neighbors were also calling about the house fire. Problem is, it got confused with another call on the other side of the valley.

Gary Lancaster, Valley Emergency Communication Center: “We have one saying we have one on the east side, one on the west side, responding to what appeared to be the same fire."

Frustrated, the Sanines went back inside their burning house to call the South Jordan fire department directly. A short time after, 911 called back.

John Sanine: “About my third trip back into the house the phone rang. It was 911 calling to confirm 'is there a fire at your house?' I said yes."

The South Jordan Fire Department arrived on the scene first, followed by West Jordan. The Sanines also had help from neighbors including the former owner of their house.

Bart Crabbe, Neighbor: “What's sad to me is they moved in three months ago, we turned the keys over to them, and to come here and see this home engulfed in flames is just very hard to watch."

Thirty five firefighters eventually put out the blaze in two hours. The home has 200,000 dollars worth of damage, which they plan to fix.

The Valley Emergency Communication Center is investigating what happened to see if they are at fault. The Sanines say they aren't upset about what happened; they are just happy everyone in their family, including seven kids, is safe.

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