One person was injured when a large fire broke out at Hixon Towing in Washington C.H. on Friday afternoon and a dog was rescued from the structure.
The owner of Hixon Towing, Jerry Hixon, received injuries to his right hand. According to Hixon, he received the injury when something happened to the power tool he was using and it caught fire.
Hixon explained his hand caught fire, then his shirt. He said he managed to run outside to get the shirt off and when he looked back up the fire had spread to the building.
“It was fortunate nobody else was hurt,” said Hixon.
According to Washington Fire Department Chief Tim Downing, mutual aide was received from Concord-Green, Jeffersonville, Bloomingburg, New Holland, Mount Sterling and Sabina. Box65 Scene Support was present to provide water, snacks and other services to the responders so they could continue to work.
During the fire, it was reported to the firefighters that a dog belonging to Hixon’s 12-year-old granddaughter was trapped inside the building. Employees of Hixon Towing, located at 309 W. Temple St., explained they had attempted to rescue the dog from a different side of the building that wasn’t on fire but were unable to get through the black smoke.
Once responders located the dog, they carried him out in what appeared to be a white sheet and laid him on the grass with the family and employees. The dog appeared unresponsive.
The employees and family members kneeled around the dog and once they realized the dog was still alive, they yelled out to responders for help. One of the responders placed a pet oxygen mask on the dog.
The pet oxygen masks are relatively new to the Washington Fire Department as they received a grant through invisible fence for a supply of them earlier this year.
Downing said, “having that tool available made a huge difference.”
After the mask was placed on the dog, responders, family members and employees kneeled around the dog in a circle to stimulate and speak to him in an attempt to keep him alive.
The Record-Herald staff member on scene made a phone call to Chief Humane Agent Brad Adams from the Fayette Regional Humane Society. Adams and Humane Agent Nick Marando arrived at the scene within minutes and transported the dog to Fayette Veterinary Hospital. Hixon traveled with them to ensure the oxygen mask remained on the dog.
According to a staff member at the Fayette Veterinary Hospital, as of 6:14 p.m. on Friday the 9-year-old dog is walking around, drinking water and eating a little bit of food.
Adams said he was both impressed and happy with how well everyone worked together at the scene.
Downing explained the fire appears to have been an accident. The next step is to allow the insurance investigators to step in.
“I think everybody came together and worked well together,” said Downing.
Reach Jennifer Woods at 740-313-0355.