Man says smoke detectors saved his life in fire

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- A man escaped a massive fire on the Southside early Wednesday morning.

The fire broke out at a home in the 3500 Bowden Circle E. The homeowner escaped safely after his smoke detectors went off and he started smelling smoke, according to Jacksonville Fire Rescue.

Officials said this was a "very hot and big fire" but a crew of 40 firefighters put out the flames within 30 minutes.

According to Battalion Chief Andy White, some of the firefighters suffered from heat exhaustion and were treated at the scene.

"If the smoke detector hadn't woke me up, I might not have made it out," said homeowner Robert Koon.

Investigators said the fire does not look suspicious and an electrical problem is to blame.

The city of Jacksonville offers a 'Smoke Detector Program' for people who need a smoke detector and can't afford one.

Call the city at 904-630-2489 to request a free smoke detector.

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