And they didn’t hesitate to act.
Credit: Facebook/Paul BierwagenWhile battling the inferno from above, a crew from the South Bend Fire Department spotted two frightened raccoons on the roof of the burning structure with no way to escape.
Rescuers got creative.
They arranged two ladders at the base of the building so they were high enough to reach the top. Then they waited.
Credit: Facebook/Paul BierwagenHere's video of what happened next:
After the raccoons climbed down to safety, cheers erupted from the crowd of spectators.
Due to the thoughtful actions of the firefighters, tragedy was averted for two animals whose lives came so close to ending.
“Some people would ask, ‘Why save the raccoons?’” the fire department later wrote. “Life safety and property conservation are two priorities on a fire scene. Thanks to our crews for taking a few minutes to let the raccoons escape!"