Firefighters save cat from apartment fire

Firefighters' quick response late Sunday to an Ashland structure fire proved to be the life-saving difference for Zephyr the cat.

Aside from Zephyr, no one was home at the apartment in the 100 block of Lincoln Street when the blaze broke out, said Dave Hanstein, captain for Ashland Fire and Rescue.

"The cat was a little scuffed up and a little smoked up, but we got it resuscitated," Hanstein said. "We just put a oxygen mask on him and he perked right up."

He said the cat was found unconscious inside the home and was close to death when firefighters scooped him up in a box a carried him to safety.

No other injuries were reported, Hanstein said.

The fire, which blew a window out of the ground-level apartment, took about 30 minutes to knock down and was burning actively when fire crews arrived, he said.

The apartment is a part of a two-story duplex, he said, the top story was vacant.

A pair of AFR engines and two engines from Jackson County Fire District 5 responded to the scene at 11:46 p.m., Hanstein said.

Though the cause of the fire is still under investigation, Hanstein said, it is believed to have originated on a windowsill in the dining room area.

The flames were contained to the dining room area, Hanstein said, though the apartment suffered heavy smoke damage.

The top-story apartment was not damaged, he said.

— Sam Wheeler

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