Norman Park family: Amazon's Alexa saved our lives during house fire

Updated: Dec. 29, 2017 at 12:29 AM EST
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(Source: WAFB)
(Source: WAFB)
From left to right, Lauri Jo Bennett, Louie Perry (Source: WALB)
From left to right, Lauri Jo Bennett, Louie Perry (Source: WALB)

NORMAN PARK, GA (WALB) - One family from Norman Park credited a smart home device for saving their lives.

Lauri Jo Bennett and her husband said it was the warning from Amazon's Echo Dot's Alexa that alerted them when their house caught fire.

"The repetition saying 'fire, fire' and it was getting louder and louder and so that's what woke me up," explained Lauri Jo.

And if she'd gone three or four more minutes without hearing Alexa's voice, she and her husband would not have made it out of their home alive.

Amazon's Echo Dot, which comes with personal assistant Alexa, was her husband's birthday gift from their daughter in August, but who knew four months later, it would save them from a house fire.

"It's crumbled right now but it's going to be even worse when we see excavators come to tear it down," said Lauri Jo.

Last Sunday around noon, she was awakened by Alexa's voice shouting 'fire.'

"If you don't have Alexa you need to get one because it was the voice that woke me up," she said.

The fully-involved flames spewed from the attic over the living room, "the whole roof is falling in on the bottom layer," Lauri Jo described.

And the 51 years of memories in the home were gone.

Six volunteer firefighters from Norman Park, Ellington and far as New Elm battled the flames for two hours before it was under control.

Some even tried to save some of their belongings.

Eleven days later, the community has stepped up to help them rebuild.

A former classmate and close friend, Louie Perry even created a GoFundMe page.

"Every single thing she owned was gone, and my heart just went out to her," said Perry.

Now she has a message for other homeowners.

"Take pictures of your rooms, check your fire detectors...I'd even advise you to order an Alexa," said Lauri Jo.

The cause of the fire is still under investigation.

Right now, Lauri Jo and her family are staying with her mom.

She plans to have a special dinner in the New Year to formally thank each one of the firefighters who volunteered their time to help save their home.

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