Fire Fatalities At Six So Far This Year In OKC
OKLAHOMA CITY - Three people were found in the rubble after an Oklahoma City house burnt to the ground Saturday. This marks six fire fatalities within the metro area in 2018.
“The winter months, not only do we have more fires, but the ones that we have can be a little bit more difficult,” Battalion Chief Benny Fulkerson said.
Saturday’s fire on Blackwelder took 40 minutes to contain.
“We did find our first victim at 11:25 a.m. this morning,” Fulkerson said. "This was an adult male."
Fire crews found two more dead bodies just hours later, belonging to a man and woman. The house was boarded up, but neighbors say homeless people often sleep inside the vacant building.
“They're just trying to stay warm,” Fulkerson said. "It's miserable. It's bitter cold." Fulkerson says that bitter cold has been a factor of many of the 37 fires in 2018. While this particular fire is still a mystery for investigators, it’s similar to the four fatal vacant home fires they had last year.
For the entirety of 2017, 10 people died in Oklahoma City fires. In 2018, six people have died in city fires so far.
“So far this year,” Fulkerson said, "we are not doing very well."
Smoke alarms for residential homes are available at any fires station. For vacant homes, Fulkerson recommends owners board them up well and make sure to check on them.