A three-alarm, residential fire in January displaced Iowa residents, one of them being Jake Vanderslice. Seven weeks after the fire, a TV station checked in with him at the scene of the incident. He was finally able to enter the residence and witness the extent of the damage while grabbing some personal items. Since the fire, he's been living with family and friends.
"I have a lot of water and smoke damage," he told a local ABC news affiliate. "Luckily I was able to get a lot of my personal and sentimental items."
Had fire sprinklers been inside his home, the outcome might have been different. West Des Moines Fire Marshal Mike Whitsell told another TV station that the residence lacked this technology. A growing metropolitan population, he says, may be to blame for a recent spat of fires in his town. "It just seems we're winning that lottery, so to speak. It's a lottery we don't want to win."
If interacting with the media about a home fire, please make sure you're mentioning whether or not it had working smoke alarms and home fire sprinklers. Use our talking points document as a guide.