Lunar Eclipse Helps Protect Fresno Couple

Published 04/15 2014 10:18PM

Updated 04/15 2014 11:12PM

An act of Mother Nature helped protect a Fresno couple from a house fire.  Rather than sleeping in their bed Monday night, the two camped in their backyard overnight to watch the lunar eclipse.  It turned out to be a decision that may have saved their lives.

"It was kind of a shocker in the sense that it happened so quickly," said Michael Baerg, a survivor of a house fire.

Michael Baerg and his girlfriend, Victoria High are literally picking up the pieces of their lives right now after a fire ripped through the attic of the home they are renting.

"Very grateful that everyone is ok and my animals are ok," said Victoria High, a survivor of a house fire.

Michael and Victoria were camping in their yard Tuesday morning to watch the rare formation of a blood moon.  They dozed off for about 30 minutes, then loud noises woke them up.

"As soon as I opened my eyes I could see the fire pushing out through the vent there and a little bit along the roof line," said Baerg.
Michael dialed 911 and hoped it was all just a horrible dream.

"I couldn't grasp exactly what was going on until we were out on the street and then it was like oh my goodness, our house is burning down," said Baerg.

While their house may not be livable, many of their personal items were able to be saved.

"The firemen were very efficient and caring enough to gather all my photos and protect all my belongings," said High.

Investigators say a water heater malfunction likely caused the fire.

"Maybe a gas leak, a natural gas leak was ignited by the pilot light of the water heater," said Captain Rudy Guadiana of the Fresno Fire Dept.

Captain Rudy Guadiana wants people to know that PG&E will actually inspect all of your gas appliances free of charge.

"It doesn't hurt to do it routinely, maybe every five years or so," said Captain Guadiana.

The saying usually goes, "thank your lucky stars."  However in this case, it's more like "praise the moon."

"It was definitely meant to be how everything happened," said High.

"We just think it's a godsend that we were out here you know," said Baerg.

Michael and Victoria are fortunate to have relatives they can now stay with while they look for a new place to live. 

Copyright 2016 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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