Several Texas firefighters were hurt in a house collapse as they battled to put out the fire. Two of them, Joe Yeakley and Caleb Snider, suffered the most injuries in the sudden collapse of the roof. The homeowner was able to get out safely and call for help before the fire spread to a dangerous level.
Firefighters were inside the home as the roof began to collapse on top of them, according to the Bryan-College Station Eagle. Joe Yeakley and another firefighter were inside the garage working on putting out the flames as the roof caved. Although the other firefighter managed to escape, Joe Yeakley became stuck under the debris and had to be rescued. Caleb Snider suffered burns as he helped others rescue Yeakley from the collapse.
Joe Yeakley was taken to Parkland Medical with severe burns and remains in critical condition at this time, but Caleb Snider has already been released after receiving treatment. The Lindale Fire Department is asking everyone to pray for the firefighter who remains hospitalized. Joe Yeakley is a volunteer who has spent 14 years helping the department and is known for taking newcomers under his wing.
The Lindale Fire Department is asking the public to get involved by sending donations and food that they can take to the Joe Yeakley family. Since the firefighter is being held in a Dallas hospital, his family had to make the long trip from home to see him and will be stuck in the city for a while. The fire department is accepting donations at its fire stations and hopes to see the community get involved.
The fire department describes Joe Yeakley as a good instructor who has a total of 30 years of experience with fires and who has been passing on his knowledge to others. Many credit the fact that the number of injuries in this fire was low to Yeakley’s frequent safety lessons. Unfortunately, he could not save himself from becoming trapped under the quickly falling roof.
The cause of the house fire is still not known, but neighbors state it is not the first time a fire has started in the home. The owner was watching a film and noticed the fire, so he went to get help from a neighbor because he did not have a phone. The house collapsed as firefighters were working on it, and it is no longer considered livable.