Overnight house fire claims life of 7-year-old girl

Overnight house fire claims life of 7-year-old girl
Friday, February 14, 2014 - 6:16pm

Hidalgo County fire officials are investigating a fatal house fire that killed a 7-year-old girl last night.

Alton's fire department received a call just before 10:30 p.m. about a home engulfed in flames.  The house is located just north of 3 Mile Line on Bentsen Palm Drive.

According to investigators, six people were home at the time of the fire--a mother, grandmother, and four children all under the age of 18.

Alton's fire chief said that when firefighters arrived at the scene, the youngest member of the family was still inside the burning building.

"When we got here, they told us there was another one inside the house, a little girl," said Javier Garcia, Alton Fire Marshal/Fire Chief.  "So my guys went in to do a search and rescue.  We finally located the little girl and the firefighters went in and took her out."

Firefighters administered CPR to the young girl after removing her from the house.  She was later pronounced dead. 

No official cause of death is determined at this time, however the preliminary autopsy results reveal the girl died from smoke inhalation.

The investigation is only in the first stages, but officials do not suspect that any criminal activity is involved in the deadly house fire.

"We can probably say at this point that this was an electrical fire," said Lupe Treviño, Hidalgo County Sheriff.  "It was strictly a very tragic event caused by a faulty breaker box."

Newscenter 23 spoke with the family of the young girl who passed away, they said she had a very close relationship with her grandmother.  In fact, investigators believe that the young girl went to the opposite side of the house to find her grandma at the time the fire broke out.

The rest of the family had minor injuries from the fire.  One of the children--an 11-year-old boy--was taken to a San Antonio hospital for severe burns.

The boy's aunt tells us that much of his face is badly burned and needs significant medical treatment.

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