Cleburne Times-Review, Cleburne, TX

Local News

April 3, 2013

Mansfield firefighters responded on time, city says

 

 

Johnson County homeowners said their house burned Friday because 911 operators hung up on their call. But the city of Mansfield and Johnson County Emergency Services District No. 1 say they arrived within minutes, according to a Monday release from the Johnson County ESD and a statement from Mansfield.

JCESD received a transferred 911 call at 8:08 p.m. for a structure fire in the 2600 block of Howell Drive. The home is within the district of Station 82 in Lillian, JCESD Executive Director Mike Johnston said.

No one was injured but the home’s roof burned off and the house is likely a total loss, Johnston said.

Homeowners John and Lori Hensley told NBCDFW.com they had to wait too long for help and that a 911 operator hung up during one of the calls for help.

“The news is saying the 911 dispatch hung up on them,” Johnston said. “That’s not true [on our part]. I’ve listened to the tape and we didn’t hang up on them for sure.”

The hang up apparently occurred with Mansfield’s dispatch, which is not part of JCESD.

“One operator did disengage one call after determining the call was in regards to the house fire on Howell Drive in which personnel and equipment had already been dispatched,” according to the Mansfield city release.

The Hensleys and friends were at their home when the fire started and initially attempted to fight it themselves before calling 911, according to NBCDFW.com.

The first call, made from the home, was answered by JCESD dispatch. At least two other calls made on cellphones, apparently by neighbors, were answered by operators in Mansfield, the Hensleys told NBC.

The couple’s home sits in unincorporated Johnson County, across the street from Mansfield city limits.

Johnston said JCESD dispatch notified several Johnson County fire departments at 8:10 p.m. including Station 82, Venus, Briaroaks, Alvarado and Mansfield.

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