Four Deaths Involving Fire So Far In 2013
by Jill Johnson
August 15, 2013 11:23 AM
Wednesday's fatal house fire marked the fourth death associated with fire in Sioux Falls so far this year.
Authorities say they responded to the home on the 300 block of South St. Paul Avenue at around 1:40 in the morning.
Sioux Falls Police say they were patrolling the area when an officer noticed smoke and flames coming from the home. Two officers found 40-year-old Jennifer Ann Donaldson of Sioux Falls laying by the front door inside the home. They pulled her from the home and tried resuscitating her but she died at the scene.
SFFR Fire Marshal Dean Lanier said, "I think the consistent theme across each one of the incidents is we couldn't prove the presence and the fact that smoke detectors weren't working at the time of the fire."
Originally, it was reported that her four children were in the home at the time of the fire so Sioux Falls Fire Rescue treated it as a rescue mission. It was later discovered that the only person inside the home was Donaldson. It took 15 to 20 minutes to put the blaze out.
Sioux Falls Fire Rescue says the fire originated in the kitchen, but as of right now, they don't know the cause of the fire.
Lanier says the three major causes of residential fires in Sioux Falls involve cooking, smoking and candles.