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Tenn. fire chief recalls being pulled from burning home

Maury County Fire Department Chief Jeff Hardy became partially trapped in a burning home after a portion of the building collapsed above him

By FireRescue1 Staff

COLUMBIA, Tenn. — A fire chief was rescued by his colleague after becoming trapped in a burning home.

Columbia Daily Herald reported that on Jan. 18, Maury County Fire Department responded to their second house fire of the night while on their way to their first awards banquet.

“Units initiated an offensive attack and primary search of the first floor,” a statement from the department said. “A second line was stretched to the second floor in an attempt to cut the fire off.”

An evacuation horn was sounded, but Chief Jeff Hardy became partially trapped after a portion of the building collapsed above him as he was exiting the home.

“As I started to run, that’s when the ceiling and rafters came down on top of me,” Hardy said. “The garage door fell in front of me, and as I ran into the garage, I kept pushing forward, trying to get out of the residence.”

Lt. Chuck Estes pulled him from the building immediately, according to News Channel 5.

“He saw an opening to my left and was able to reach in, grab my arm and guide me out from underneath all the rubble,” Hardy said.

Hardy said if it weren’t for Estes’ quick thinking, the incident could have turned out much worse.

“This is a dangerous job, and it takes dedicated people to do this type of career,” Hardy said.