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Fire leaves OKC family without insurance homeless


OKLAHOMA CITY – An Oklahoma City family of five is grateful to be alive after they escaped seconds before flames engulfed their home.

It started just before 2:30 a.m. Thursday in the 600 block of N. Tompkins Dr.

Christopher Long could only watch with his family as his home was destroyed.

“It was burning, it was burning real bad,” Long said.

So bad, the house caught fire a second time hours after firefighters left; a devastating sight to his wife, Lila Chatman.

“I see loss, everything is gone,” she said. “The biggest thing everyone is safe.”

The family, including three small children, all escaped because they had a fire plan.

When they woke up to smoke and popping sounds, they acted quickly.

“We immediately knew what to do, get the kids and round them up and leave out as a family,” Long said. “You know, make sure everybody is here. We talked about this before.”

Fire fighters said the fire started in the garage, ignited by the dryer.

The family doesn’t have insurance so they will have to start over on their own.

Looking back at the fire, they thankful everyone survived.

They warn other families to have a fire plan and be prepared.