Broward County

Fort Lauderdale fire marshal sniffs out a fire on his way to office

Firefighters perform a secondary search for victims at a home at 1304 NE Second Ave. on Tuesday, Nov. 18, 2014.
Firefighters perform a secondary search for victims at a home at 1304 NE Second Ave. on Tuesday, Nov. 18, 2014. Fort Lauderdale Fire Rescue

A Fort Lauderdale fire marshal was on his way back to the office Tuesday afternoon when he noticed something that set off his firefighter alarm bells.

While driving on Northeast Second Avenue, Jeff Lucas saw smoke coming out of a house and pulled over to see what was going on.

When Lucas, who was appointed acting fire marshal six months ago, approached the home at 1304 NE Second Ave., he “was met by a wall of black smoke that was flowing heavily of out the eaves,” according to a fire rescue statement.

“Nobody had called 911 yet,” Deputy Fire Chief Timothy Heiser said. “So he called the on-duty division via radio. He put his gear on and checked the home for occupants.”

After searching the house and making sure no one was inside, the 19-year veteran handed over command to the firefighters who had arrived by then.

“Since it was a vacant structure, no one would have called for quite a while,” Heiser said. “It would have gone up in flames. It was a good thing he caught it when he did.”

No one was injured, and the cause was under investigation.

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