Video: The great escape

posted at 6:01 pm on March 26, 2014 by Allahpundit

To cleanse the palate, a real-life action flick caught on camera yesterday in Houston. You can gawk without regret: The worker on the ledge is fine, as are his co-workers who were inside the building when the fire broke out. All that’s missing is a lovable cop sidekick muttering, “I’m too old for this sh*t.”

Show of hands: Who among you would have had the agility and the balls to try that little balcony move that probably saved his life? Darwinism at work, my friends. Hope this dude has a dozen kids.


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Imagine if that building was complete and occupied. Once the fire got into the attic, it ripped through the entire building pretty quick. It would have been an epic tragedy. Where were the firewalls?

tdarrington on March 26, 2014 at 6:07 PM

Dude kept his cool, kept his head about him, and survived.

oscarwilde on March 26, 2014 at 6:08 PM

Who among you would have had the agility and the balls to try that little balcony move that probably saved his life?

Try a risky move or burn to death? Yeah, I’m going with the first option here.

rbj on March 26, 2014 at 6:09 PM

Darwinism at work, my friends. Hope this dude has a dozen kids.

LOLed at that. So true. So true.

Rational Thought on March 26, 2014 at 6:10 PM

Too soon for a joke about how this is a metaphor for the burning ruins of Obama’s credibility? Poor joke really, in order to burn it you have to have it. Maybe there’s an analogy to be made for Obamacare; a massive conflagration about to ruin lives and all you can do is stare in mute horror.

Tacitus on March 26, 2014 at 6:12 PM

Adrenaline is a an amazing motivator when necessary.

Mallard T. Drake on March 26, 2014 at 6:14 PM

Warning: Watch without sound to avoid wanting to slap something. This guy has a huge pair. Great rescue!

Cheese Wheel on March 26, 2014 at 6:14 PM

Some people do what they have to do. I’ve often seen stories about people who died and could have saved themselves. I heard that building went up like it was cardboard. Someones’ heads should roll.

crankyoldlady on March 26, 2014 at 6:15 PM

NYC, 9/11/01: Some jumped to their certain deaths rather than to be consumed by flames.

Another Drew on March 26, 2014 at 6:15 PM

If you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs…

Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it,
And—which is more—you’ll be a Man, my son!

The beginning and end of “If” by Rudyard Kipling.

http://www.poemhunter.com/poem/if

jnials on March 26, 2014 at 6:15 PM

O/T:

Hot Air is easily my favorite blog. However, recently when I’m on my Android phone, the site causes malicious pop-up ads that try to get me to install malware and causes video ads to play at full volume even when my phone is on silent mode. I find this unacceptable and if Salem cares about its customers, it will fix this immediately.

joekenha on March 26, 2014 at 6:15 PM

I’m trying to work a Liberty Tower BASE jumping joke in here, but it won’t fly.

Mallard T. Drake on March 26, 2014 at 6:16 PM

commentary is embarrassing. a man is perilously close to burning to death and some the men in the office sound like internet trolls.

Mitochondrion on March 26, 2014 at 6:16 PM

Where were the firewalls, it went up like it was cardboard….

Flammable materials abound at a construction site.
There is a good chance that those “firewalls” had not yet been completed.

Another Drew on March 26, 2014 at 6:17 PM

Who among you would have had the agility and the balls to try that little balcony move that probably saved his life?

Right here.

Jeff Weimer on March 26, 2014 at 6:18 PM

Where were the firewalls? tdarrington on March 26, 2014 at 6:07 PM

I’m no architect, but to my layman’s eye it looks like that edifice was under construction. So, my guess is they were under construction.

Akzed on March 26, 2014 at 6:19 PM

commentary is embarrassing. a man is perilously close to burning to death and some the men in the office sound like internet trolls.

Mitochondrion on March 26, 2014 at 6:16 PM

You could see some of those boys in the window. No way they could jump. It would have looked like a luau pit, minus the banana leaves, on that ledge.

Cheese Wheel on March 26, 2014 at 6:21 PM

Allah, I would have gotten down a bit sooner had you not been screaming OMG and Oh my God so freaking much. Relax! I’m fine.

Bmore on March 26, 2014 at 6:24 PM

Too soon for a joke about how this is a metaphor for the burning ruins of Obama’s credibility? Poor joke really, in order to burn it you have to have it. Maybe there’s an analogy to be made for Obamacare; a massive conflagration about to ruin lives and all you can do is stare in mute horror.

Tacitus on March 26, 2014 at 6:12 PM

No, not too soon — to increase the joke’s potential to upset the left, maybe throw some sarcasm in there feigning lamentation over how it was mostly males that ran into the disaster and attempted to correct matters. Man, I really hate Bush. #metaphormicdrop /sar

brentspolemics on March 26, 2014 at 6:26 PM

Where were the firewalls? tdarrington on March 26, 2014 at 6:07 PM

I’m no architect, but to my layman’s eye it looks like that edifice was under construction. So, my guess is they were under construction.

Akzed on March 26, 2014 at 6:19 PM

There should have been concrete or block walls from the ground to roof peak between each apartment, or at least every 2-3 apts. These would have gone in first during construction and would prevent horizontal spread of fire.

tdarrington on March 26, 2014 at 6:26 PM

Related story…in Boston this afternoon 2 firefighters were killed in a huge 9-Alarm fire on Beacon Street in the Back Bay. It started in the basement and soon engulfed the entire 4 story brownstone, and the high winds made things even worse.

Del Dolemonte on March 26, 2014 at 6:26 PM

MeanWhile,…now in Boston:

Boston fire, March 26, 2014
Back Bay, Boston, MA, US
6m
Editor’s note: WBZ, The Boston Globe and WCVB are reporting, per sources, that two Boston firefighters were killed in the Back Bay neighborhood building fire. We’re watching for additional confirmation. – Stephanie

http://www.breakingnews.com/topic/boston-fire-march-26-2014/

canopfor on March 26, 2014 at 6:27 PM

“Damn I was gonna get an apartment over there too.”

“Not now.”

“They’re cheaper now.”

WhatSlushfund on March 26, 2014 at 6:28 PM

tdarrington on March 26, 2014 at 6:26 PM

You’re joking right?

It’s Houston

cozmo on March 26, 2014 at 6:28 PM

I’m no architect, but to my layman’s eye it looks like that edifice was under construction. So, my guess is they were under construction.

Akzed on March 26, 2014 at 6:19 PM

I salute your restraint. My answer was going to end with the word “dumba$$”. :)

Splashman on March 26, 2014 at 6:29 PM

I live on a high floor of a high rise, and sometimes I wonder about situations like this. It has lots of balconies. I’d probably attempt something similar.

WhatSlushfund on March 26, 2014 at 6:30 PM

Wonder what started that

WhatSlushfund on March 26, 2014 at 6:31 PM

Dude kept his cool, kept his head about him, and survived.

oscarwilde on March 26, 2014 at 6:08 PM

Exactly. That was a good example of the OODA Loop in use.

climbnjump on March 26, 2014 at 6:31 PM

You’re joking right?

It’s Houston

cozmo on March 26, 2014 at 6:28 PM

Truss roof, composite floor joists, 3/8 drywall….cheap, light weight, cheap, cheap,cheap. Burns like tissue paper, and collapses fast. But I bet it was going to have a faux stone facade, so it would have looked expensive and well-built.

tdarrington on March 26, 2014 at 6:32 PM

http://www.breakingnews.com/topic/boston-fire-march-26-2014/

canopfor on March 26, 2014 at 6:27 PM

The earliest reports indicated at least one of them was in the basement, as a Mayday call was heard from that location.

I lived in one of the buildings almost directly across the street from this fire 40 years ago-a lot of those old brownstones used “balloon construction” in the walls, which makes them firetraps.

Del Dolemonte on March 26, 2014 at 6:32 PM

I salute your restraint. My answer was going to end with the word “dumba$$”. :)

Splashman on March 26, 2014 at 6:29 PM

Glad you’re not an architect, then. Build interior firewalls last…and you were going to call me a dumbass?

tdarrington on March 26, 2014 at 6:35 PM

Show of hands: Who among you would have had the agility and the balls to try that little balcony move that probably saved his life? Darwinism at work, my friends. Hope this dude has a dozen kids.
===================================================

I burned my leg,.at an early age,…..I think I would’ve
tried anything to avoid a repeat,..I dunno!!

But man o man,that was something, just WOW!!

canopfor on March 26, 2014 at 6:35 PM

canopfor on March 26, 2014 at 6:27 PM

The earliest reports indicated at least one of them was in the basement, as a Mayday call was heard from that location.

I lived in one of the buildings almost directly across the street from this fire 40 years ago-a lot of those old brownstones used “balloon construction” in the walls, which makes them firetraps.

Del Dolemonte on March 26, 2014 at 6:32 PM

Del Dolemente: Oh gawd, from the basement.

There seems to be alot of fires lately:)

canopfor on March 26, 2014 at 6:37 PM

tdarrington on March 26, 2014 at 6:32 PM

Yep, the metroplex ain’t any different.

All these yankees moving down here want something that looks yankee.

And they ain’t picky.

cozmo on March 26, 2014 at 6:38 PM

“I’m too old for this sh*t to use the word poo-poo as an expletive. But I’ll do it anyways.”

Fixed.

itsnotaboutme on March 26, 2014 at 6:38 PM

Too soon for a joke about how this is a metaphor for the burning ruins of Obama’s credibility? Poor joke really, in order to burn it you have to have it. Maybe there’s an analogy to be made for Obamacare; a massive conflagration about to ruin lives and all you can do is stare in mute horror.

Tacitus on March 26, 2014 at 6:12 PM

Well, there is this…

What Happens If A US President Stops Speaking, And Nobody Claps

Seven Percent Solution on March 26, 2014 at 6:41 PM

cozmo on March 26, 2014 at 6:38 PM

Moving to TX this summer. I noticed during a visit that there isn’t much Texas left in Texas. Looks like any other generic place in the US.

tdarrington on March 26, 2014 at 6:46 PM

Del Dolemonte on March 26, 2014 at 6:32 PM

Del Dolemente: Oh gawd, from the basement.

There seems to be alot of fires lately:)

canopfor on March 26, 2014 at 6:37 PM

Boston has escaped a lot of bad fires in recent years…before today their last loss of life was in a 2007 Chinese restaurant fire in West Roxbury; 2 firefighters died in that one.

Prior to that the Boston FD hadn’t lost any members since 1972, when 9 of them were killed. That fire was also in the Back Bay on Commonwealth Avenue. But that one was only 4 alarms, despite being in a much larger building (the 1870s vintage Hotel Vendome).

Del Dolemonte on March 26, 2014 at 6:49 PM

tdarrington on March 26, 2014 at 6:46 PM

That’s pretty much the case for all big city Texas.

Damn yankees.

cozmo on March 26, 2014 at 6:50 PM

Well, there is this…

What Happens If A US President Stops Speaking, And Nobody Claps

Seven Percent Solution on March 26, 2014 at 6:41 PM

Seven Percent Solution: Ahems,..Lol.:)

Retweeted by Ukrainian Updates
John Schindler ‏@20committee 1h

On Russian state TV tonight, top RU FP expert Fedor Lukyanov hailed Obama’s #Ukraine speech as “simply golden words”: not a good sign, folks

canopfor on March 26, 2014 at 6:56 PM

Moving to TX this summer. I noticed during a visit that there isn’t much Texas left in Texas. Looks like any other generic place in the US.

tdarrington on March 26, 2014 at 6:46 PM

Yeah in the cities and burbs it looks the same….
There are many cool little Texas towns left with lots of character, you just have to explore.

redguy on March 26, 2014 at 6:57 PM

On Russian state TV tonight, top RU FP expert Fedor Lukyanov hailed Obama’s #Ukraine speech as “simply golden words”: not a good sign, folks

canopfor on March 26, 2014 at 6:56 PM

I think the Russian meant “Golden Shower Words”,
Obama gets away with pissing on Americans, the Russians will kick his bony ass…..

redguy on March 26, 2014 at 6:58 PM

Moving to TX this summer. I noticed during a visit that there isn’t much Texas left in Texas. Looks like any other generic place in the US.

tdarrington on March 26, 2014 at 6:46 PM

There is plenty of Texas left in Texas. It’s just that there is so dadgum much real estate, that if you are in one of our little pockets of indifference, or *gah* blue run mainly by coastal culture envy, the horizon might appear out of sight. Trust me, no matter what pocket you land in, you are safely surrounded.

You don’t trust me, I can tell. Well, check out this chart about how Abortion Barbie lost big time during the primaries, even in our notoriously blue border counties.

RushBaby on March 26, 2014 at 7:07 PM

Darwinism at work, my friends.

Huh, I had the exact opposite reaction. When the lady who was the main voice said, “Thank Jesus, thank God,” I almost cried in affirmation.

yaedon on March 26, 2014 at 7:38 PM

…he dropped so easily to the balcony below him…he could have done it a few more times…and walked away.

KOOLAID2 on March 26, 2014 at 7:41 PM

Try a risky move or burn to death? Yeah, I’m going with the first option here.
rbj on March 26, 2014 at 6:09 PM

Yup. He was able to get some swing going to help propel himself unto the lower ledge. Good quick thinking.

whatcat on March 26, 2014 at 7:50 PM

he dropped so easily to the balcony below him…he could have done it a few more times…and walked away.

KOOLAID2 on March 26, 2014 at 7:41 PM

And have that falling burning wall land on him as he walks away? I think he saw the cavalry was coming and wisely decided to let his buds do the job they were trained to do.

whatcat on March 26, 2014 at 7:53 PM

Moving to Texas this summer. Lucky guy.
Live in suburban Houston. Sure looks the same, but your mortgage sure won’t if you are coming from one of those f’king liberal states.

Get a CHL, no income taxes, every statewide office is republican and mostly conservative. Only RINO I can think of is Cornyn.

Gotta love Cruz, Perry and Abbott

Moved here from Canada in 1977, and thanking God ever since.

txdoc on March 26, 2014 at 8:04 PM

Amazing video..had to mute it though, couldn’t stand the lady talking..Glad he was rescued and safe today

sadsushi on March 26, 2014 at 8:15 PM

Amazing video..had to mute it though, couldn’t stand the lady talking..Glad he was rescued and safe today
sadsushi on March 26, 2014 at 8:15 PM

I’m glad she kept the language pretty clean. Some videos are unwatchable due to a constant stream of the foulest cusswords.

whatcat on March 26, 2014 at 10:29 PM

Harold Lloyd used to do stuff like that all the time, just for a movie.

And he was missing a thumb and index finger on his right hand.

CurtZHP on March 27, 2014 at 8:02 AM

Imagine if that building was complete and occupied. Once the fire got into the attic, it ripped through the entire building pretty quick. It would have been an epic tragedy. Where were the firewalls?

tdarrington on March 26, 2014 at 6:07 PM

Residential apartment buildings can have several thousand square feet of space between firewalls. At 4 stories they usually install sprinkler protection (which further increases the allowable distance between firewalls). I don’t have the IRC sitting in front of me at the moment, but that’s what I recall.

If there were masonry firewalls, they are constructed prior to floors and roofs being installed (have to, wall must be “self-supporting” and continue to a non-combustible roof line).

Hootie on March 27, 2014 at 8:47 AM

Loved the “OMG” at the beginning. *shaking my head*

I think I would have given it another swing. He looked perilously close to the edge on landing. Yeesh. Kudos to the man – I hope he has LOTS of grandkids to bore with that story as they grow up. :)

(BTW, notice that he also picked the safest spot on that upper floor? It was the last place to become engulfed, and the only spot where the wall didn’t come plunging down at the end. Ballsy and smart.)

GWB on March 27, 2014 at 9:02 AM

Where were the firewalls?

tdarrington on March 26, 2014 at 6:07 PM

Looks to be steel framed, with elevated concrete slabs. The only other masonry/concrete it was likely designed to have would be support columns. All other demising walls would be installed once the shell was complete. As others have mentioned, sprinkler systems and other fireproofing upon completion would slow a fire much more than the case here. In any event, great thinking by that guy on how to stay alive.

Effay5 on March 27, 2014 at 9:42 AM