Two children were among five people killed in a mobile home fire in Ohio on Thanksgiving, according to authorities.
Richland volunteer firefighters responded to a call for an address in Athens County around 7:30 a.m., according to the Ohio Department of Commerce. Upon arrival at the scene, the volunteer firefighters found two mobile homes on fire, as well as an outbuilding damaged, the Associated Press reported. (RELATED: Three Killed, 14 Injured In Early Morning NYC Apartment Fire)
“Any kind of fatality, it’s hard. When there’s five and there’s children involved, it adds to it,” Richland Area Volunteer Fire Department Chief Dale Sinclair stated, according to AP News.
— Karin Johnson WLWT (@karinjohnson) November 24, 2023
The volunteer firefighters reported one of the mobile homes had a collapsed roof while engulfed in flames. They reportedly found five deceased occupants inside; however, a single occupant was able to make it out of the fire and was taken to a local hospital, Brandon Klein, a person associated with the commerce department, told AP News.
While the cause of the fire is still unknown, the state’s fire marshal’s office, the county sheriff’s office and the county coroner are investigating the incident. None of the deceased victims have been named, but authorities did confirm there were two deceased children among the five victims to WLWT-TV and WOWK-TV. (RELATED: Videos Show Fire Erupting On Atlantic City Boardwalk)
Sinclair noted some of the volunteer firefighters knew the occupants within the mobile homes, stating there was a plan to debrief the team while highlighting there will be “mental health” needs met.
“We’re having a debriefing tonight. We’ve got a team coming in to meet with everyone and try to get as much mental health help as we can,” Sinclair stated, according to WLWT.