- The Washington Times - Saturday, January 31, 2004

Fish bowl douses classroom fire

EAGAN, Minn. — A smoke alarm summoned firefighters to a school in the middle of the night, but when they arrived the flames already had been put out. Dory took care of it.

Dory is a fish, a betta kept in a vase on a desk in a third-grade classroom at Trinity Lone Oak Lutheran School. A forgotten candle started a small fire on the desk on Jan. 24, setting off the smoke alarm and shattering the fish bowl, spilling enough water to put out the flames.

Firefighters found a few embers still glowing on the desk — and Dory still alive in a puddle.

“It was certainly looking distinctly unhappy,” firefighter Al Taylor said of the little fish.

House explosion kills 3 children, father

EL PASO, Texas — An explosion late Friday engulfed a house in flames and collapsed the roof, killing three children and their father, the El Paso Times reported. Fire officials had no names available for the dead father and the three children, ages 4, 6 and 12.

An 8-year-old boy was to be sent to Lubbock for specialized burn treatment, fire officials said. A 35-year-old woman and a 55-year-old woman were at Beaumont Army Medical Center for treatment of first-, second- and third-degree burns.

The family had lived in the home for less than a year, neighbors said. A woman was pulled out of the home, but she was trying to get back inside the burning house as neighbors who rushed outdoors after the blast tried to hold her back, said Maria De Santiago, a neighbor.

The cause of the explosion and fire are under investigation.

Small plane crashes into Pacific Ocean

LOS ANGELES — A small plane crashed into the ocean yesterday morning about a half-mile from the Port of Los Angeles, and divers were sent to search for the wreckage, authorities said.

The type of plane and how many people were on board were not immediately known, said Art Marrujo, dispatch supervisor for the Los Angeles County Fire Department. There were no signs of survivors or wreckage, although an oil slick was visible on the surface, he said.

The plane went down about 10 a.m. between the Los Angeles Lighthouse and Cabrillo Beach, Mr. Marrujo said.

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