Five children – aged between two and nine – die in apartment fire

Five children, all younger than 10, have died in an apartment fire in St Louis, Illinois.

The children’s mother had left home to pick up another adult from work and returned to find the building on fire, officials said.

The mother entered the building several times in a bid to rescue her children.

The children, all younger than 10, were left home without an adult. Pic: AP
Image:The children’s mother had left home to pick up another adult from work and returned to find the building on fire. Pic: AP

Although it was initially indicated that no adults had been present when the fire started, investigators have been given new information and are trying to determine if a grandparent was present, local media reported.

Fire crews were called to the building in East St Louis in the early hours of Friday morning, where they found two children already dead inside a bedroom.

The three other children were unconscious on the kitchen floor, officials said. Two were pronounced dead when they were taken outside.

More on United States

  • US jobs growth beats forecast and unemployment falls in sign of continuing economic surge

  • Six dead after sightseeing plane crashes in southern Alaska

  • Woman in San Francisco pictured waving AK-47 out of car window

  • Andrew Cuomo: Joe Biden says New York governor should quit after investigation finds he sexually harassed women

  • Rapper DaBaby apologises for homophobic comments at gig – ‘I needed education’

  • COVID-19: Is there a risk from variants as US and EU travellers enter the UK without quarantine?

The fifth child was taken to hospital where they later died.

All of the children were aged between two and nine years old and all belonged to the same family.

A relative told the St Louis Post-Disptach the family had moved to the apartment after a fire destroyed their previous East St Louis home five months ago.

Kenneth Jennings, right, helps hold crime scene tape as a hearse carrying the remains of children leaves the scene of an East St. Louis apartment fire in the 500 block of 29th Street on Friday, Aug. 6, 2021. Jennings lives in the basement of the apartments and escaped with a few belongings..Photo by Robert Cohen, rcohen@post-dispatch.com
Image:Fire crews were called to the building in the early hours of Friday morning. Pic: AP

St Louis Assistant Fire Chief George McClellan said: “The guys are taking it pretty hard.”

He added: “It’s kids… they are just blameless in this, and they’re just kids. It’s tough.”

The cause of the fire is now under investigation. Seven other families were displaced by the blaze, but officials said they were not at home when it broke out.

Mark Gibson

Graduates in Northwestern University, Evanston, Illinois 1990. Move to Los Angeles California in 2004. Specialized in Internet journalism.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *