Three injured in overnight Westerlo house fire

WESTERLO, N.Y. (NEWS10) – A Westerlo couple and their teenaged son are injured, but expected to survive after narrowly escaping a house fire that destroyed their home.

Neighbors say it was a smoke detector that alerted the sleeping Lewis family that something was wrong.

The couple and their 16-year-old son making it out of the burning home alive, using their car as an ambulance as they made it to their neighbor’s home for help.

“Lee was banging on the door. I got up and she said, ‘Call 911 my house is on fire’,” Gloria Rao said.

Gloria and her husband John Rao describe how their neighbors Lee and Dave Lewis and their son Thomas came to their door for help.

Having just escaped their burning Westerlo home, all three were in rough shape. The dad, Dave suffered from bloodied hands and feet.

“He was leaving a trail of blood on the floor. He didn’t even realize he was cut,” John Rao said. “He knew at that point that his son was having a difficult time breathing. They spent a lot of time right here at the sink. He was trying to calm him down.”

When EMTs arrived, all three were rushed to ambulances.

“All three of them suffered burns. I don’t really have any patient information all I know is that they have been transferred.”

The Albany County Sheriff tells NEWS10 ABC that the family is being treated at a burn unit at Upstate University Hospital in Syracuse.

The Westerlo fire chief says the home was also where Lee Lewis ran a soap and lotion making business. Her Ladybug Soap Company items are well known for boutiques throughout the Capital Region.

Firefighters say the home is a total loss.

“The home is gone. So they got to start over again but the fortunate thing is, they got out alive.”

Officials say the Lewis’ are expected to make it.

The cause of the fire has not been released and remains under investigation.

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