Hero trooper shares story of evacuating fire victims from burnin - FOX Carolina 21

Hero trooper shares story of evacuating fire victims from burning apartment building

Posted: Updated:
(FOX Carolina)/April 3, 2018 (FOX Carolina)/April 3, 2018
GREENVILLE COUNTY, SC (FOX Carolina) -

A South Carolina Highway Patrol trooper is being called a hero for his quick action - and what he did may have saved lives during an apartment fire in Greenville County.

The fire happened in the early morning hours on Saturday along Sulphur Springs Road, when the apartment residents were asleep.  But thanks to Trooper Tyler Landreth, they were alerted to the danger.  In fact, he was first on the scene.

“I just happened to look over my left shoulder and saw a glow in a second story apartment window," he said. "That was out of the ordinary so I flipped around and of course smoke was coming from the roof.  I activated my lights and called for the fire department to come and didn't see anyone around any of the apartments so I went up the stairs and started knocking on doors to see if I could get folks out.”

Landreth says he's been with the South Carolina Highway Patrol for about two and a half years, but has never responded to a fire.  He said instinct took over, and he started knocking on doors to get people out of the apartments.

“With it being that early in the morning, probably everyone was winding down so it took a couple knocks on several doors to get people to come to the doors.  More than likely they were asleep," he said.

Landreth tells us he helped direct traffic after the fire crews arrived on scene, and another trooper also came by to help.  He says normally he spends his days helping out with collisions, so it's definitely a first to work a fire.

“Nothing can prepare you for something like that," he said. "We're not trained to arrive first to a fire so really just instinct took over.”

The Berea Fire Department responded, and said they are still investigating.  One of the apartment units was a total loss and the seven others impacted had smoke and water damage.  The Red Cross helped out those displaced by the emergency.

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