Elderly man and his dog burned in Slingerlands house fire

December 29, 2017 05:25 PM

SLINGERLANDS - A passerby called 911 after they saw Nazzerine Donato, 91, and his dog walk out of the house and they were engulfed in flames.

It happened just before 12:30 at 492 Font Grove Road. 

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First responders doused Mr. Donato and he was taken by helicopter to a burn unit at Westchester Medical Center.

The dog was transferred to the Delmar Animal Hospital and later had to be euthanized, according to Albany County Sheriff Craig Apple.

The house is a total loss and was an older structure covered in petroleum based asphalt shingles.

Sheriff Apple says Mr. Donato told them he was downstairs and heard a bang and then he went upstairs to determine what it was.

The preliminary investigation indicates the fire spread from a woodstove inside the house. When firefighters arrived, the woodstove door was open.

"We've had a lot of these fires in the last few days, unfortunately fatal fires throughout the state in the past few days.   It's a tragedy but hopefully Mr. Donato will pull through this," said Sheriff Craig Apple.

Considering the upcoming frigid temperatures, Sheriff Apple is urging people to check on elderly neighbors and relatives.  He says they tend to use older and unconventional devices to keep warm and that could be dangerous, if not deadly.

Sheriff Apple added that this is a great time for everyone to test their home smoke and Carbon Monoxide detectors. 



WNYT Staff

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