According to a press release from the Hagerstown City Fire Marshal’s Office the Thursday night fire at 1036-G Noland Drive, Court #5 has been deemed responsible for the deaths of two of the four occupants of the unit.
Despite fast response and the Hagerstown Fire Department’s intimate knowledge of the building layout, the fire—which according to the ongoing investigation—started in a second floor rear bedroom claimed the lives of two children, ages three and four.
The fire call came in around 7pm on Thursday with an EMS unit from Halfway arriving at the address within two minutes to find a house fire. While two adults had managed to escape, two children were trapped inside. City of Hagerstown Engine 5 arrived on the scene approximately a minute later. Crews entered the building, located the children, and removed them from the structure in less than five minutes. Because the Hagerstown Fire Department had been training for months in some of the unoccupied units in the Noland community, they were well prepared to execute a search and rescue plan that could lead to a positive outcome.
The children were found in one of the two front bedrooms, and once extricated from the building, EMS personnel found that they were both in cardiac arrest. EMS and fire personnel immediately began CPR and other advanced life support techniques. The children and the adults were transported to Meritus Medical Center for additional treatment and evaluation. Once stabilized, the children were airlifted to Children’s National Medical Center in Washington, DC where they died on Sunday. Both adults were treated and released from the hospital. The fire was brought under control in less than ten minutes. In addition to the four people, two dogs and two pet birds were rescued from the fire and were in the custody of family members.
Firefighters and emergency personnel from Hagerstown, Halfway Fire & EMS, Funkstown, Community Rescue Service, Williamsport EMS, Boonsboro EMS, Washington County Air & Rehab, Washington County Division of Emergency Services, Hagerstown Police Department, Washington County Fire Police, Hagerstown Auxiliary Police, and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives (ATF) responded to the scene.
The investigation by the Hagerstown Fire Marshal’s Office, with assistance from the Hagerstown Police Department and the ATF, continues. More information will be forthcoming when it is known and able to be released. Anyone with any knowledge regarding the fire is urged to call 301-790-2476 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Hagerstown Fire Department reminds residents of these important safety tips to help prevent and minimize the impact of house fires:
-Have working smoke detectors installed in your home
-Close (bedroom doors) before you doze
-Have an escape plan that includes two ways out
-Get out of the house and stay out
-When a fire is detected, call 911 immediately. Early notification saves lives.
Call the Hagerstown Fire Department for free smoke detectors and more information at 301-733-3339.