Monessen firefighters are stressing the importance of smoke alarms after a resident escaped a fire she was unable to smell due to COVID-19 symptoms.
“I heard a bang and thought, ‘Oh, that’s Kitty.’ Kitty is always doing something,” Cindy Hebel said.
But shortly after what she thought was just her mischievous cat messing around, the smoke alarms started screaming. “I jumped up. By then, I saw - and how, I don’t know - the whole upstairs was filled with smoke,” Hebel said.
The cat had knocked the toaster into a wicker wastebasket, catching everything on fire. “This is a prime example of a smoke detector saving the day,” said Hilltop Safety Officer John Poprosky.
He said Hebel had lost her sense of smell due to COVID-19, and was unable to smell the smoke that was filling her home.