State Trooper Saves Carbon County Woman’s Life

07.29.16 | Bob Price

A state trooper is being called a hero tonight after a brave rescue in Carbon County.

A house fire in Penn Forest Township left one woman trapped inside burned and breathing in too much smoke.

That trooper went in again and again to find her and pull her to safety.

Newswatch 16 has the story.

This is what fire did to the inside of this home near Blakeslee.

The walls and floors are coated with soot, and the smell of smoke is still heavy in the air.

"We were almost home when they called to tell me the house was on fire,” said Dawn Bassetti, the mother saved from fire.

The Bassetti family says the dehumidifier caught fire.

Smoke quickly filled the place, trapping Dawn Bassetti's mom, a 69-year old woman inside, a woman family members say can barely walk and uses an oxygen tank twenty four hours a day, seven days a week.

State Trooper Jonathan Bailey says it’s instinctual.  "Just instinct at that point, they said someone is in the house and you just react at that point, you don't think about what's going on, you don't think about what's going to happen to you."

Trooper Bailey of the Fern Ridge Barracks arrived before any other rescue crews.

And when he heard someone was still inside, he says he didn't think twice.

He ran in.

Trooper Bailey adds, "On the side of the house were two large propane tanks, she's prescribed oxygen, there was an oxygen tank right next to her so with the fire in close proximity to her and the amount of smoke, it could have been a lot worse. It was pretty good timing that I was close by."

Trooper Bailey went outside several times to breathe before going back into the pitch black, searching for the woman inside.

Trooper Bailey says "couldn't even see like an inch in front of me so it was by her voice and her communicating with me that I could figure out where she was.”

The woman suffered burns and smoke inhalation.

Two other women who were in the house but managed to get out were treated at hospitals, too, but have since been released.

"Yeah, I mean thank God for him. We appreciate him,” said Tony Bassetti, the mother-in-law rescued by trooper.

"All she knew is that someone picked her up and carried her outside and we're just so grateful. They saved my mom and there aren't enough words that I can ever use to thank them for that,” Dawn Bassetti added.

Trooper Bailey was taken to the hospital for smoke inhalation.

When he got the okay from a doctor, he returned to his shift.

Trooper Bailey says, "I'm doing the same thing that anyone else wearing this uniform, any man and woman wearing this uniform would have done in that same situation."

The woman Trooper Bailey rescued is still in the hospital but hopes to be released in a few days following that fire in Carbon County.