Man jumps from home during fire, in critical condition

WAUKESHA (WITI) -- A 34-year-old Waukesha man is in critical condition at an area burn unit after a fire destroyed his home Friday night, February 14th. Neighbors say they witnessed the man jump from the home to save himself from the flames. Officials say he was the only one in the home at the time of the fire. "He dove into the snow like it was a swimming pool," said neighbor John Quartillo. "I ran upstairs to get wet blankets and ran out to set it on him. He just looked like the skin was peeling off of him." The fire began around 9:30 p.m. at the home near Motor and S. Washington Ave. The flames were so intense, siding on nearby homes melted. Neighbors were evacuated as a precaution. "Stuff started blowing up and popping. It just seemed like it took off really, really quick," said Quartillo. Waukesha Police Sergeant Jerry Habanek will not yet release the name of the victim, but says police have been to the home before. Habanek says officials are working to determine whether the fire is suspicious in nature. The State Fire Marshall and State Patrol's Crime Scene Reconstructionist Unit are also on the scene as the fire remains under investigation.