« Answering social media questionnaires could help identity thieves, police say | Main | Cookie-cutter company finds sweet spot with US manufacturing »

Family claims 'smart' doorbell saved them from house fire

Ring(CORONA, Calif.) -- A California homeowner claims he and his family safely escaped a house fire because of a smart doorbell.

Mike Hernandez told ABC News Los Angeles station KABC-TV that the motion sensor connected to his video doorbell detected flames in front of his Corona, California, home.

Hernandez woke up around 3:30 a.m. on Sunday when his phone went off with alerts from the doorbell system.

"I finally opened my eyes and looked to my right and outside my bedroom window -- what looked to be flames," Hernandez said.

The fire started in the front lawn and quickly spread to the porch, where Hernandez attempted to fight the flames with an extinguisher.

"It was horrifying," he said. "You just don't know what to expect."

Hernandez; his fiancé, Katy Nix; and brother all made it out of the house safely.

"It's terrifying, but we're gonna move forward and we're thankful that it wasn't worse," Nix said.

Hernandez said the smoke detectors were removed because the house was being repainted.

Investigators said they are working on determining the cause of the fire.

David Hamilton, a former Nutley Fire Department chief, told ABC News, "Nothing will beat traditional methods of smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors in the home." But he added that new technology can help with early detection to know "what's going on in the house when you aren't at home."

Ring, the maker of the high-tech video doorbell and security system, said the device did what it was supposed to do: keep families safe with an added security measure.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

ABC News Radio