An early morning house fire claimed three lives in Philadelphia on Sunday in a continuation of the city’s recent struggles with blazes.
The fire broke out around 4:30 a.m., quickly enveloping the three-story, double-wide house. Officials identified the victims as Prudence and Dean Figueroa, and their grandmother Monique Guillory, according to NBC10. The three lived with the children’s mother and her boyfriend, both of whom managed to escape the fire.
The Philadelphia Fire Department responded in force, with over 30 vehicles and 100 personnel helping to put out the fire. Firefighters rescued one child from the fire shortly after it broke out. She died later at the hospital. Firefighters recovered the body of the second child and their grandmother around 7:30 a.m.
“Despite our best efforts - these folks are the best in the world - sometimes it’s just too late,” Fire Commissioner Adam Thiel said to 6ABC. “It’s very sad. It’s tragic. It hurts for us. It hurts for our entire community.”
Fires raged across Philadelphia this past week, claiming four others since last Sunday. This uptick pushes your safety and preparation to the forefront.
A Landlord’s Job Includes Your Safety
In some cities and towns, landlords are responsible for providing smoke detectors, fire extinguishers, and keeping exits accessible in case of emergency. You may be responsible for keeping smoke detectors in working condition after installation, however.
Fixing gas leaks or cleaning dirty dryer hoses may also be their job, leaving them on the hook for the aftermath if they neglect that job. Our burn safety checklist can help you learn what to look for to keep your home safe.
A neglected home can go up in flames quickly, leading to significant property loss or deaths and injuries like burns that you received through no fault of your own. A knowledgeable attorney may be able to prove negligence on the part of landlords or manufacturers. We may be able to help even if you believe the fire was your fault.
As for the house fire, investigators are still searching for signs of smoke detectors. The commissioner implored Philly residents to take matters into their own hands.
“We just cannot do this alone,” Commissioner Thiel said to Fox29. “We gotta have help. We are imploring everyone to take charge of your own fire safety.” The Philadelphia Fire Department will install smoke detectors for free after the city’s rash of blazes.
(Note: The feature photo does not represent the actual event discussed in this piece.)
(Editor’s Note: This is a news story from the ‘Morgan Monitor,’ a news wire offering legal perspectives on news in your community.)