A family's pet parrot may have saved their lives after it alerted them to a fire inside their Fort Lauderdale home Tuesday morning, officials said.
Residents of the home at 1336 Southwest 18th Avenue were awoken by their squawking parrot around 3:45 a.m. and discovered smoke inside, Fort Lauderdale Fire Rescue Division Chief Robert Bacic said.
The residents were able to escape the home unharmed.
Firefighters responded and found flames and heavy smoke coming from the home and were able to quickly contain it to the laundry room, Bacic said. They were able to stop it from spreading to the rest of the house.
Laurajean Niesel said she wasn't surprised her parrot, Pearly, alerted them.
"When I got him I remember they told me to be very careful with frying pans made out of Teflon because if that burns it could kill the bird," she said. "So they're very sensitive to smoke or even heat."
Pearly is a three-and-a-half-year-old Grey Ringneck.
The cause of the fire is being investigated, Bacic said.