Smoke Detectors Not Working In Bay Point Home Where Woman Killed By Fire

By: M. Whitney Jr. - Mon, 09 Jan 2012 00:37:09 -0800

      (BCN) -- A 60-year-old woman died in a two-alarm fire in a Bay Point
townhouse early this morning, Contra Costa County fire officials said today.

      The fire was reported shortly before 5 a.m. in a townhouse on the
100 block of Tammy Circle, said Lewis Broschard, fire marshal for the Contra
Costa County Fire Protection District.

      Smoke and flames were visible from the first and second floors of
the townhouse when firefighters arrived, one resident who had been able to
escape was waiting outside. The resident told firefighters that another
resident was still inside.

      Firefighters located the second resident, a 60-year-old woman, on
a sofabed in the living room on the ground floor, but she was already dead
when she was found, Broschard said.

      The fire began in the living room where the woman was found, but
the cause remains under investigation. The woman's cause of death remains
unknown pending an autopsy that is scheduled for Monday.

      In addition to the extensive damage caused to the unit where the
fire started, there was also damage to the attached units on either side,
Broschard said. A total of four adults and four children were displaced, and
the total structural damage is estimated at around $250,000.

      The surviving occupant in the primary unit told fire investigators
that smoke detectors in the home were not working. Broschard said the death
underscored the importance of changing the batteries on smoke detectors twice
a year and testing them once a month.

      "The smoke generation in this fire was extreme. He barely had
enough time to get out and unfortunately she didn't have enough time to get
out," Broschard said.

      "Had the smoke alarm been operational it would have woken them up
sooner," Broschard said.
     
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