BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - A family of five is waiting to find out what caused flames to destroy their home early Sunday morning.
Biloxi fire officials were contacted around 5 a.m. about a massive blaze in a subdivision off of Debuys Road in Biloxi. Fire trucks lined the outside of Channel Mark Drive as crews worked to save the two story home.
"The flames were through the roof. Part of the roof had already collapsed so it was pretty well involved by the time they got here," Fire Chief Joe Boney said.
The homeowners clung to their small children as they walked away from what Chief Boney called a total loss.
Fire officials say when they arrived to the scene, the home was fully engulfed in flames. Flames so high, they almost reached the top of a ladder.
"They had to make a defensive attack. In other words they had to fight the fire from the outside, so they could knock some of the fire down to get inside," Chief Boney said.
Even though the house was completely damaged, the Chief credits the training of his firefighters for responding and reacting as quickly as they did.
"It becomes like instinct to them...They know how to recognize what they need to do and they act right to it," Chief Boney said. "You can always replace a house, but you can't replace lives."
Chief Boney says the department will soon launch a city wide campaign where they'll be going door to door to make sure your home smoke alarms are working and properly. He also says they will be replacing smoke alarms that aren't working, free of charge.
"There's no excuse not to have a good, working smoke detector in your house. And as you can see behind me, it can save your life," the Chief Boney added.