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Thursday, November 16, 2017

Temple Hills House Fire with 2 Fatalities - Lorraine Drive

MEDIA CONTACT: Mark E. Brady, Chief Spokesperson, 240-508-7930
MEBrady@co.pg.md.us     @PGFDPIO

Firefighters removed 2 occupants from their burning Temple Hills home on Wednesday afternoon.  Just before 12:30 pm, November 15th, firefighters were alerted to a reported house fire with two occupants trapped in the 5200 block of Lorraine Drive.  First arriving units found a 1-story brick rambler, with basement, with fire showing from the front.

Two neighbors had attempted entry into the structure to assist the occupants, initially at the front door and then the rear door but each time they were forced to retreat due to high heat and thick smoke.  Another neighbor called 911 and provided valuable information as to the possible location of the occupants.  This information was relayed to responding firefighters by dispatchers.

First arriving crews initiated a simultaneous search for the trapped occupants and stretched hose lines into the structure to extinguish the fire.  An adult female and adult male were quickly located and brought to the exterior where medics initiated treatment.  Both patients were found to have no pulse and not breathing and quickly transported to a nearby hospital while life support measures were being administered.

The fire was extinguished within 12 minutes.

Tragically, despite the very best efforts of firefighters, medics and hospital staff both patients succumbed to injuries a short time after arriving at the hospital.  While we will await confirmation from the Medical Examiner of the identity it is believed the deceased are the normal occupants of the house: a female, 80ish years of age, and her son, 60ish year old male.

Two of the first arriving firefighters sustained 2nd degree burns to a small area of their body.  Both were taken to the Burn Unit at Medstar Washington Hospital Center.  The firefighters were treated and released.

Fire Investigators believe the fire originated in the basement and extended to the first floor.  Fire loss to the structure and contents is estimated at $80,000.  The status of a smoke alarm and exact cause of the fire is undetermined.

Firefighter/Medics will return to the community Thursday morning around 10:00 am going door-to-door and asking if they can check on residents smoke alarms.  If they find an alarm not working or none present they will install one for them free of charge.  Any Prince George’s County resident can call 311 and ask for a similar service.  On January 1, 2018, a law will require that all homes in the County that use a battery operated smoke alarm to upgrade to a 10-year smoke alarm on all levels of their home and inside every bedroom.  Current law only requires 1 smoke alarm for the entire house.