SPACE HEATER SUSPECTED IN DEADLY DELHI HOUSE FIRE
Published 4:02 pm Thursday, September 15, 2022
RICHLAND PARISH (Sept. 15, 2022)- The State Fire Marshal’s Office (SFM) is continuing its investigation into a deadly house fire in Delhi.
Around 3:30 a.m. on Wednesday, September 14, Richland Fire District Ward 1, with assistance from Holly Ridge Fire Department, responded to a report of a house fire located on Carson Road. Unfortunately, firefighters located the bodies of an elderly couple inside.
Official identifications and causes of death are pending with the Richland Parish Coroner’s Office, however, the victims are believed to be the 78-year-old male and 77-year-old female homeowners. The victims were located in two separate bedrooms.
After an assessment of the scene and collecting witness statements, SFM deputies have determined the fire began in the home’s living room area.
While the exact cause is still undetermined, deputies have not been able to rule out the possibility that an unattended, active space heater, or a separate electrical malfunction, are potential contributing factors.
“It is alarming that on the very first night that our state experiences even a slight drop in temperature that a tragedy like this happens,” said State Fire Marshal Dan Wallis, “We all have to make it our mission as we head into the fall and winter seasons to commit to being more aware of the fire dangers in our homes, especially as it relates to heating. And we have to take the necessary steps to lessen or eliminate those dangers once identified to ensure our family’s safety.”
If you’re utilizing a space heater for warmth, make sure it is located 3-5 feet away from combustible items like blankets and furniture. In addition, make sure the device is plugged directly into a wall outlet, not into an extension cord, and never leave a space heater running when you’re not in the room or when you’re sleeping.
In addition, deputies were unable to confirm the presence of working smoke alarms in the home. The SFM wants to stress to all Louisiana residents that smoke alarms have proven to be the difference between life and death in a fire emergency. If you need assistance obtaining smoke alarms for your home, Operations Save-A-Life can help. To learn more about Operation Save-A-Life, visit our website at lasfm.org.