MEDIA CONTACT: Mark E. Brady, Chief Spokesperson, 240-508-7930
At about 11:15 PM, Saturday, March 20, 2010, Firefighter/Medics were alerted to a house fire with a child trapped inside. Firefighters and paramedics arrived quickly and immediately located the child; however, she had already succumbed to injuries.
An adult female ran to her neighbor’s house in the 6100 block of Parkview Lane in Clinton seeking help and telling neighbors that her young daughter was trapped inside of her burning home across the street. The neighbors called 911 with Fire/EMS units arriving soon after. Paramedics from Clinton Fire/EMS Station #825 and a ladder truck from Allentown Road Fire/EMS Station #832 were the first to arrive and encountered a 1-story single family home with heavy smoke issuing from the house. Having been updated with information about the trapped child the crew from Truck 832 entered the burning home, without the protection of a hoseline, to search for the child. They encountered a fire in a family room/den and quickly located the 8-year-old female. Her condition was immediately assessed and tragically pronounced deceased on the scene.
Paramedics tended to the child’s mother, an adult female in her 40’s, and treated her for burn and smoke injuries. She was transported by Maryland State Police Trooper 2 medevac helicopter to a Burn Unit. Her injuries were classified as serious and non-life threatening.
It required about 15 minutes to extinguish the fire. There were 30 firefighters and paramedics on the scene. The cause and origin of the fire remain under investigation, however, appears accidental. Standard operating procedure for fires that involve a fatality requires the County Police Department Homicide Unit jointly investigate the incident along with Investigators from the Fire/EMS Department’s Office of the Fire Marshal. Fire loss is estimated at $20,000. The identity of the deceased and the cause of the fire will be withheld pending autopsy results.
A smoke alarm was located; however, it did not appear to be working. Prince George’s County residents can have a working smoke alarm installed in their home, free of charge, by contacting our Livable Communities Smoke Alarm Hotline at 301-864-SAFE (7233). Remember, if you sleep with your bedroom door closed then a working smoke alarm should be installed inside the bedroom as well as in the hallway.
WASHINGTON POST STORY