Fire destroys South Elgin home; family, dog, bearded dragon survive

SOUTH ELGIN, Ill. (WLS) -- Fire destroyed a home Wednesday morning in northwest suburban South Elgin. The family who lived there, including their dog, Louie, and bearded dragon, Galileo, all made it out alive.

Firefighters responded around 3:35 a.m. to a report of a garage fire in the 600-block of Fairview Lane.

"I'm yelling for my neighbors to get out the house, get out the house, get out the house! I come to find they are already out the house," said Khyla Montgomery, who lives nearby.

The mother, father and son were too shaken up to speak on camera Wednesday morning, but said they woke to the smell of smoke and got out quickly.

The fire was eventually upgrade to a two-alarm fire. Crews from several departments were called to the scene to help out.

The family's two cars, which were parked in the driveway, were both damaged. The home next door also caught fire. The siding melted off the side of the house. That family also escaped safely.

The fire was extinguished by around 5:15 a.m., but firefighters remained on the scene to put out hot spots at the two-and-a-half-story house. There were also flare-ups near a gas main. Nicor was on the scene.

Neighbors were evacuated after reportedly hearing an explosion. Investigators said they think the homeowner may have had oxygen tanks inside.

"Their oxygen tanks popping and all that - exploding. It was pretty scary," said Lavonne Montgomery, who also lives nearby.

Two people were treated for minor smoke inhalation at a hospital and released.

Officials said the fire started in the garage, but the cause remains under investigation.
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