Two people dead after Pittsfield house fire


PITTSFIELD, MA (WRGB) -- The Massachusetts State Fire Marshal is investigating an early morning house fire in Pittsfield that claimed the lives of two people. Their identities have not been released yet.

The call came in shortly after 4:00 AM Thursday for 71 Bryan Street.

When crews arrived they found heavy fire on the first floor, spreading to the second floor. They heard two people were trapped.

Pittsfield Fire Chief Robert Czerwinski says it was an elderly couple. Firefighters found them on the first floor. They believe they were trying to escape. The woman was found dead inside. The man was pulled out of the home, still breathing, and was taken to Berkshire Medical Center. He later died from his injuries.

The couple's daughter escaped the fire. Neighbors say she ran door-to-door asking for them to call 9-1-1.

Chief Czerwinski believes the fire was caused when an electrical wire short circuited.

"It was an extension cord that was plugged into a power strip, that was plugged into an old outlet. And the extension cord appeared to be buried under a bunch of cardboard boxes," Chief Czerwinski said.

The Chief also believes there was only one working smoke detector in the basement.

"It is fire prevention week and it's important we stress that message. Make sure you have working smoke detectors in your house, and working carbon monoxide detectors in your house," Czerwinski said.

The house is a total loss.

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