MOSS POINT, MS (WLOX) - Charred remains are all that's left of a Moss Point house, despite efforts by its owner to save the Second Street home Tuesday night.
Daniel White was burned trying to save the structure from the flames. Wednesday night, the 68-year-old was hospitalized in stable condition.
"He was burned on his right shoulder and lower back," Fire Inspector Robert Lavinghouse said. "It was a little too much for him to try to smother it, and he tried to exit the house."
Investigators are still trying to determine a cause for the fire. As they sifted through the smoldering ruins Wednesday, they said White is lucky to even be alive.
"We could have found him after it was all said and done."
Fire officials said what worries them is a lot of people, like White, make the big mistake of trying to put out fires themselves, as well as not buying tools to help detect fires.
"It was a really old home; we didn't see the smoke detector," Lavinghouse said.
"If you discover a fire in your home, the best thing you can do is exit your house immediately and take your cell phone, and call 911 from outside the house," Fire Chief Mike Dale said.
Luckily, Daniel White is still around to heed that advice in the future. His neighbors are looking forward to seeing their friend back where he belongs.
"He's usually sitting in front of that door waving at everybody," one neighbor said. "Watching traffic and waving, just being a regular nice guy."
Moss Point officials said there have been about 11 major fires already this year. Their plan now is to increase their fire prevention push so no one in their community will end up a fire statistic.