Off-duty firefighters save Katy neighbor's home after lightning strikes causes flames to spread

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Friday, August 12, 2022
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A father and son, and a few other men who volunteer as firefighters leaped into action without any protective gear and used water hoses from the home to save it.

KATY, Texas (KTRK) -- Two garden hoses and a group of volunteers in the right place at the right time likely saved a home from burning down in Katy on Wednesday night.

A lightning strike hit the house next door, and the flames spread rapidly. Only ABC13 was there when the homeowner met one of the men who protected his property.

"I'm Derrick. I'm Eduardo. Nice to meet you," said the two neighbors who hadn't met each other before.

Eduardo Costa says he's grateful that Derrick Hughes was just a few doors down during Wednesday night's electrical storm. Hughes remembers yelling at Costa to get out of his house after the flames sparked.

Hughes, his son, and a few other men who happened to live in the area knew what to do when lightning struck the house in Katy's Vantana Lakes neighborhood.

How is that? They were all off-duty volunteer firefighters.

"This house, we couldn't do anything to help them. We knew we could try to help this exposure house. That's what we focused on. We took the water hoses and just kept spraying as much as we could for as long as we could because it was very intense heat," Hughes said.

The men helped minimize the damage with no protective gear and just two water hoses at Costa's home. "Just broken windows and a little bit of plastic. That's all, Costa said while assessing the damage. "

Looking at what could've happened, Costa said he was grateful for the neighbors he didn't know he had.

"Thank you so much for helping. It was awesome. Thank you for everything you did for us Wednesday," Costa said. To which Hughes responded, "That's just normal for firefighters."

The home initially hit by the lightning strike was destroyed, but no one was hurt.

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