HONESDALE, Pa. – A fire on Thursday in a house with inoperative smoke alarms killed five people, including three young children, in this quaint village in the Pocono Mountains.
Fire officials were called to the home shortly after 6 a.m. and quickly put out the blaze. But when they entered the house, the victims were already dead.
"They found one, then another one and then another one until they had a total of five," Fire Chief Stanton Pratt said.
Officials said the batteries in the home's smoke alarms were dead.
A state police fire marshal was investigating the cause of the blaze.
The victims were two women and the three children, two boys and a girl, officials said. A neighbor said the children ranged in age from 2 to 4.
Authorities said the victims likely died of smoke inhalation. No names were released.
Floyd Rake said his 22-year-old daughter, Heather, was among those who died. She had been staying with the other woman and the children, he said, but had planned to move in with her fiance this weekend.
"She was a very nice kid. She'd do anything for anybody," he said. "I just hope she didn't suffer too bad."