Fatal Fire in Richmond Under Investigation

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Updated: 10/14/2013 11:16 pm

An elderly woman is dead after a Richmond house fire. 

Neighbors say the fire on Walnut Street happened fast and produced smoke that could be seen from blocks away.

Neighbors on Walnut Street smelled smoke and heard three pops.  The home was engulfed in flames in a matter of seconds.

“When I stepped around the side of my house, I told my wife I smelled smoke, and she told me oh it's just my brakes on my bus, I told her there was no way,” said Allen Long, a neighbor.  “When I got to the back of my house, I noticed the smoke, I come running around the other side of my house and by the time I got to the front of the house, the house was done engulfed.”

Fire crew got a call about a structure fire potentially with people inside around 1:30 Monday afternoon.  It only took crews two minutes to get to the home but the fire had already spread to both floors of the house.

Firefighters found the body of an elderly woman inside the home.  It is presumed the body is the woman in her 60’s that lived in the home with her husband.  She was on oxygen and in a wheelchair.  No identification has been made.  The body is in Frankfurt for testing.  The husband was at work when the fire occurred.

“You very rarely see her but her husband, he comes up and down he's real friendly but that was the main thing going through my head, was she at home,” said Long.

The home is condemned and crews are still investigating what caused this fire. 

“It's still early in the investigation so we don't cause, we don't have any thoughts on that,” said Corey Lewis, PIO for the Richmond Fire Department.  “It's really early but we are working with our investigation bureau and the state police and the Kentucky state fire marshal's office for that determination.”

Richmond firefighters want to remind everyone that smoke detectors save lives. 

“We’re not sure if they were present in this home.  Hopefully we will be able to find that out through our investigation process but it’s important to have working smoke alarms,” said Lewis.  “We’re not sure if that would have made a difference today but it does give people an upper hand and an advantage in saving their lives and their home.”

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