Trailer fire leaves Gulfport family homeless

GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) - Gulfport Fire Chief Michael Beyerstedt said an electrical fire destroyed the trailer off East Pass Road Tuesday afternoon.  He said some wiring under the trailer caught fire shortly after 1:30. The flames quickly spread through the trailer.

Virginia Barnett watched in horror Tuesday afternoon as the flames raced through her trailer at Midway Trailer Park.  She was at her mom's trailer right next door.

"I ran all the way from my momma's porch on this side. I opened this door," Barnett. "The fire was coming out the window, because it had broken a glass."

By the time Gulfport firefighters arrived, the trailer was fully engulfed.

"Trying not to cry, but it's hard, real hard," said Barnett.

The Barnett family just moved into the trailer in December. Everything inside, including the furniture and carpeting, was brand new.

"Pictures, everything just burned up," said Barnett. "Invest in my savings into trying to have a stable place, and it's gone."

What she was able to salvage is now in a plastic tote.

"That's all, socks," she said.

Barnett is thankful though, that her children, ages four, two, and a three-month old baby, were not home at the time. She is also relieved, because just ten minutes before her trailer burst into flames, she was asleep in the back bedroom.

"Never had a fire. I had a hurricane and a tree falling in, but never had stuff like this happen," Barnett said.

The American Red Cross put the family up in a hotel for three days.

"I have to find a stable place for them," Barnett said.

Barnett had rented the trailer, with plans to own it one day. Now, she's scrambling to find another place to call home.

Barnett works in hotel housekeeping. She is also taking some college courses. The family has no insurance. If you can help out in any way, call her mother Jenna Mack at (228) 213-0329.

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