When she drove up to put mail in one of her customer’s mail boxes, Gridley Rural Letter Carrier Meredith Bates was shocked to see flames shooting out of their front window.
“I was startled to see the flames and immediately called 911. I stayed there until the Fire Department arrived minutes later. No one was home at the time of the fire,” said Bates, a two-year postal employee.
The fire happened around 2 p.m. in the afternoon when most of the neighbors were also not at home. Once the firefighters arrived on scene, they could see that the flames had spread throughout the small house. It took firefighters about 20 minutes to put the flames out. The cause of the fire was not known at press time. Had it not been for the alertness and quick thinking of Bates, this could have been a greater disaster.
“I love my job, but days like these are the hardest. I’ve been fortunate. This is the first incident of this kind that I’ve been involved in. Hopefully it won’t happen again,” she said.
Letter Carriers are very often the “eyes and ears” of the communities they serve and their actions make a huge difference.