Tuesday, January 23, 2018
Public safety

Five people and dog treated after fire at Largo mobile home park

LARGO — Five people and a dog required medical attention after a fire broke out in a mobile home Tuesday morning.

Flames tore through the home in the Westgate Mobile Home Park, 14099 Belcher Road S, around 10 a.m.

A couple and their two children who lived in the home were taken to Morton Plant Hospital in Clearwater as a precaution, because so much smoke was generated by the fire, said Largo Fire Rescue spokesman David Mixson. Their names were not released.

A neighbor — Mark Gilbert, 46 — was taken to Largo Medical Center to be treated for moderate smoke inhalation, Mixson said.

Gilbert's wife, Jackie Gilbert, 47, said he was trying to help control the blaze with a garden hose. "He sits outside all the time, and he saw the smoke," she said. Mark Gilbert was discharged from the hospital in the afternoon, a hospital spokeswoman said.

Jackie Gilbert added that the damage to the mobile home is extensive. "They really need help," she said.

Christy Smith, 35, who lives next door, called 911 when she saw the smoke. She said she doesn't think much will be recovered. "It's a total loss," she said.

The family's dog was unresponsive when firefighters found it in the house, but it was revived with oxygen on the way to a nearby emergency veterinary center, Mixson said.

The cause of the fire will be investigated by the state fire marshal's office. "There's some indication that the fire may have been started by one of the two children," said Largo fire Chief Mike Wallace.

About 10 fire engines and 20 firefighters responded to the scene, Mixson said.

Andy Thomason can be reached at (727) 445-4155 or [email protected] Staff writer Marissa Lang contributed to this story.

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