WESLEY CHAPEL - The screech of a smoke detector yanked a woman from her sleep as fire blackened the bedroom of her house Monday morning.
"I thought the alarm was malfunctioning, but when I looked up, the ceiling was turning black," Bernice Dale said after the blaze damaged part of her house in the King's Landing neighborhood.
Smoke, fire and water damage left the house, 26922 Haverhill Drive, uninhabitable. Firefighters hadn't pinpointed the cause. The fire appeared to have started in the front bedroom used by Dale's children.
Dale said she had finished her night shift at a home for disabled children and was sleeping before starting her second job at a Wal-Mart Supercenter.
She was the only member of her family at home Monday morning and escaped about 10 a.m. through a rear sliding glass door as flames raced across the bedroom ceilings.
Her two dogs - Snow, a Labrador retriever, and Shorty, a chihuahua - also slipped unharmed out of the 8-year-old, 1,500-square-foot house.
King's Landing is a community of single-family homes south of State Road 54 about a mile west of Interstate 75.