At Least 13 Killed in Philadelphia Fire
A fire at a duplex in Philadelphia killed 13 people, including seven children. Fire officials said 26 people had been staying in the home.
Officials said the building’s four smoke alarms weren’t working, and the cause of the fire hasn’t been determined.
“It was terrible. I’ve been around for 35 years now and this is probably one of the worst fires I have ever been to,” said Craig Murphy, first deputy fire commissioner.
Murphy said that while 26 people is a large number to be occupying a duplex, but a spokesperson for the city’s Department of Licenses and Inspections said there isn’t a cap on the number of family members who can stay in a single unit. Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenny said people should withhold judgement.
“You don’t know the circumstances of each and every family, and maybe there were relatives and family that needed to be sheltered,” Kenney said. “Obviously the tragedy happened, and we all mourn for it. But we can’t make judgment on the number of people living in the house because sometimes people just need to be indoors.”
“Losing so many kids is just devastating,” Kenney said. “Keep these babies in your prayers.”