Residents rescued from balcony of burning Newark home

NEWARK, Calif.  (BCN) -- Two residents and a dog had to be rescued from a second-story balcony of a home on fire in Newark Wednesday morning, an Alameda County fire battalion chief said.

The one-alarm blaze was reported at 6:42 a.m. at a home in the 5200 block of Ervin Court, a small cul-de-sac just east of Thornton Avenue.

Firefighters arrived and found flames on the first floor of the home and two residents and a dog stuck on a second-floor balcony, Battalion Chief Robert Petersen said.

"The smoke traveled up through their stairway and they felt like they were being driven to their balcony," Petersen said.

Fire crews put a 24-foot straight ladder up to the balcony and the residents and dog were able to get down to safety. They did not require transport to a hospital, Petersen said.

The fire was eventually extinguished shortly before 7:10 a.m.

Six people in all were displaced from the home, as well as the dog and a lizard, Petersen said.

The cause of the blaze remains under investigation, but it appeared to start in an unoccupied lower bedroom where a construction light was plugged in, according to Petersen.

He said the fire caused an estimated $50,000 in damage to the home.