Based on an nj.com article, a 16-unit building at a Newton apartment complex burned down, killing an 83-year-old female resident. The fire was reported at 4:03 a.m. on January 22, 2010. When police officers and firefighters arrived on the scene, they found the second-story apartment on the front corner of one apartment building engulfed in flames and smoke. While authorities think that the fire may have began in the deceased woman’s apartment, the cause of this fatal fire is still under investigation.
According to the article, a neighbor was yelling to try to awaken residents of the building as well as going door-to-door to warn them. Sadly, the elderly woman’s apartment was the only one that neighbors couldn’t get into because her door had been locked with the deadbolt. Neighbors also tried to access her apartment from the front through the second-story balcony of her apartment, but the blaze’s heat was too powerful. There were no other injuries from the fire aside from one firefighter sustaining a minor hand injury after slipping on ice.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report that deaths from fires and burns are the fifth most common cause of unintentional injury deaths in the United States, and the third leading cause of fatal home injury. In 2008 alone, one person died in a fire about every 158 minutes and someone was injured every 31 minutes.
Even though the amount of people who have been killed or injured in residential fires has declined steadily as of late, still, several deaths caused by residential fires could have been prevented. If you or someone close to you has been injured or killed in a fire that you believe was caused by a defective product or another person’s negligence, the skilled New Jersey personal injury law firm of Lependorf & Silverstein can help. Contact our experienced attorneys today for a free consultation by calling 609-240-0040.