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Thursday, August 9, 2012

Cause of Fatal Fire is Accidental

MEDIA CONTACT: Mark E. Brady, Chief Spokesperson, 240-508-7930

Fire Investigators have determined the cause and origin of a Capitol Heights fire that claimed the life of a 5-year-old girl and critically injured her father and uncle.

The cause of the fire has been determined to be accidental and attributed to an overloaded electrical circuit.  The fire began in the first floor living room that is just inside the front door of the house.  Fire loss is estimated at $150,000.

The family living in the attached home has been displaced.  The two adults, 1 child and a dog will be making their own arrangements for housing.

No medical update as of this morning.  The last check was that the 24-year-old male and the 15-year-old male remained in critical condition at the Burn Unit.

The home was equipped with two working smoke alarms.  The chain of events leading up to the smoke alarms activating and after they sounded remains under investigation.

Volunteer and career firefighters will return to Carrington Court this morning at 10:00 am.  The Post Incident Neighborhood Intervention Program (PINIP) will be conducted in the community surrounding the tragic incident.  Firefighters will go door-to-door discussing the incident with neighbors, checking smoke alarms and discussing the need to plan and practice a home escape in the event of a fire.

Any citizen may call upon the Fire/EMS Department to visit their home before an emergency and have their smoke alarms checked and help plan a home escape. 

If needed, smoke alarms will be installed and the resident instructed on how to test the alarm on the first of each month and to change the battery at least once a year.  To receive our Safety First-Everyone Goes Home visit call 301-864-SAFE.  If needed, carbon monoxide detectors are also available.

Typically, an area where there is the most fire damage visible can often lead you to a point of origin.  In this picture you can see the most singed brick exterior is from the first living room window on the side of the house and in the area of the front door. (Brady)

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