NORTHEAST PHILADELPHIA (WTXF) - Crews are investigating after a house fire in Northeast Philadelphia left one person dead and two people displaced.
Just after 12:30 p.m. Sunday, firefighters responded to the 6900 block of Oakland Street.
“Seen smoke billowing out the second floor kitchen window. There was another guy who ran up the street and started banging on the door, ringing the bell, but nobody came,” said neighbor Robert Bernstein.
Bernstein said he thought the woman on the second level of the duplex had gone to church, as usual, with the neighbors on the first floor who own the building. But the woman wasn’t feeling well when Bill Roseman and his wife were picked up for church.
“I spoke to her at 7:30 this morning. She said she wasn’t going to church and here we came home a little after one to find my house was on fire,” said Roseman.
“Companies put the fire under control in approximately 15 minutes,” said Deputy Fire Commissioner Jesse Wilson.
The 69-year-old woman couldn't escape the smoky fire. She was taken to the hospital where she was pronounced dead.
“They said the fire started in the ceiling. They asked me did she use any foggers,” Roseman stated.
“She was trying to get rid of bed bugs and roaches,” Deacon Wilbur Depew, of Burholme Baptist Church said.
Deacon Depew said whatever happened to start the fire, the woman’s Burholme Baptist Church family is devastated.
“If she was at church, maybe this wouldn’t have happened. But, I don’t know what happened,” Roseman said.
For information on how Philadelphia residents can have a smoke detector installed by the fire department, see here.
A difficult outcome today on the 6900 block of Oakland Street in the Castor neighborhood. Our thoughts are with those affected and our members who responded. pic.twitter.com/gqV6njnesh— Philadelphia Fire (@PhillyFireDept) April 29, 2018