Houma Man Dies in Late-Night House Fire

Published 1:38 pm Friday, March 4, 2022

TERREBONNE PARISH- State Fire Marshal (SFM) deputies, in collaboration with Houma Fire Department investigators, are continuing their probe into the circumstances surrounding a house fire that claimed the life of a male resident.

Just before 10:30 p.m. on Thursday, March 4, the Houma Fire Department responded to a report of a residential fire located in the 300 block of Troy Street. Firefighters were informed there were possibly several individuals trapped inside, however, upon arrival, they found two people safely outside of the home. Unfortunately, a male victim was located inside and pulled from the fire, but was pronounced dead on the scene.

While official identification and cause of death are pending with the coroner’s office, the victim is believed to be the 69-year-old homeowner.

Following an assessment of the scene, deputies determined the fire began in the bedroom where the victim was located. While the official cause of this fire remains undetermined at this time, SFM investigators are unable to rule out the possibility of unsafe smoking practices involving a medical oxygen tank.

The SFM always recommends smoking outdoors and ensuring all smoking materials are properly extinguished in the appropriate manner.  Also, refrain from smoking when tired or under the influence of alcohol or medications that make you drowsy. In addition, all spark-producing objects, like lighters, should be kept out of the reach of children.

Lastly, people should never smoke, and never allow anyone to smoke, where medical oxygen is used. Medical oxygen can cause materials to ignite more easily and make fires burn at a faster rate because oxygen is a fuel to fire. In addition:

  • Candles, matches, wood stoves and even sparking toys can be ignition sources and should not be used in a home where medical oxygen is utilized.
  • Keep oxygen cylinders at least five feet from a heat source, open flames, or electrical devices.
  • Body oil, hand lotion, and items containing oil and grease can easily ignite. Keep oil and grease away where oxygen is in use.
  • Never use aerosol sprays containing combustible materials near the oxygen.