Fire engulfs three-bedroom home in Waipio Acres

By Nana Ohkawa
Published On: Jan 19 2014 06:50:32 PM HST

A large fire engulfs the three bedroom home of an elderly man at Waipono Place.

HONOLULU -

Neighbors described rushing to rescue their elderly neighbor out of his burning home.

Click here to watch Nana Ohkawa's story.

KITV4 viewer video of the house fire shows flames engulfing the three-bedroom home on Waipono Place in Waipio Acres.

Jonathan Bell lives right behind the house that caught fire. At around 8:45 last night, he saw the enormous blaze.

"I never seen flames that big. When I first noticed the fire, it looked like the whole half of his wall was engulfed in flames," described Bell.

A neighbor said the fire was spreading rapidly. He said within minutes, the tree on his property caught on fire. But, the flames weren't their biggest concern. They were terrified for their elderly neighbors, believing they were trapped inside.

Neighbor Zuri Aki yelled out, but there was no response.

"It was evening and usually they are asleep. I was pounding on the door, eventually I had to kick the door in," said Aki.

Once inside, Aki didn't see anyone. Finally, a neighbor across the street spotted the 60-year-old man trying to get out the side door.  
     
"He was barely coming out the door so then we grabbed him and he couldn't walk, he couldn't talk, he wasn't talking. We tried to talk to him but he didn't say anything," said neighbor Chris Helenihi.

And once outside, they saw the burns all over his body.

"He had some burns on his legs, hands and his hair was singed," said Helenihi.

The man was taken to the hospital in serious condition. Neighbors said he lives with his brother, who was not at home at the time.

What started the fire is still under investigation.

Fire investigators say the damage is estimated at $250,000. The house is a total loss.

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