Tulsa Fire Captain Recalls Close Call at School Fire

Two explosions knocked the firefighters backwards, off the hoseline and covered them in fire.


A Tulsa fire captain who responded to a fire that destroyed a school one week ago recalled the blaze during his first visit back to the site.

Capt. Alec Ridener retraced his steps with KJRH-TV while back inside the building that housed the Tulsa School of Arts and Sciences on Tuesday.

He said that when they arrived, it appeared the fire was contained to one side of the school and his crew began to pull the hose line and enter through the main door.

They crawled through the smoke-filled hallway once inside and opened the door to the classroom that was on fire.

"I would say within a couple of seconds of opening that door, we heard something, and the floor shook," he told the news station.

Two explosions knocked the firefighters backwards, off the hose line and covered them in fire.

Ridener began to search for the line to follow it out of the building

"I attribute this to God, I can't think of anything else. I mean our training definitely helped. But we immediately found that hose line," he said.

All eight firefighters made it out safely, something Ridener says is a miracle.

He suffered minor ears to his face and a large burn to his side, but hopes to be back on the job soon.

The cause of the fire is still under investigation.