Space heater is possible cause of fire that left one dead and one hospitalized

- One person is dead and another in the hospital after an overnight fire near the Orlando City soccer stadium. The deadly fire gutted the house on South Parramore Ave.

The Orlando Fire Department says that 14 units of theirs, composed of 32 personnel, responded to a house fire on South Parramore Avenue around 12:02 a.m.

Upon arrival, the units say that the residential structure was fully involved with flames. Firefighters say they pulled one man from the burning house and two more people escaped during the fire. Neighbors Tamia Smith and Marjory Myles said they're devastated.

“We'd wake up in the morning, sit on the porch, laugh, talk, and everything. And just I don't know what to do no more. Like, part of me is gone,” Smith said.

Myles added “when I was out there on the streets and I needed somewhere to sleep, he opened his door for me. And he did it for a lot of other people, too."

The department says that two were transported to Orlando Regional Medical Center. One male victim died at the hospital, while the other victim was treated for smoke inhalation and burn injuries.

They say the people in the house were using a space heater and that may have started the fire.

Orlando fire investigators were able to rule the fire accidental with a undermined cause. However, witnesses say there was a smoke heater in use at the home. But, it is still too early to determine whether the cause was proximity to combustibles or related to the appliance itself.

Myles says it makes her think twice. “Yes it do. 'Cause I got a space heater. So I'm thinking about getting me another something else,” she said.

The fire department is also urging residents to be cautious when using heating appliances. This includes space heaters, fireplaces, generators, ovens, or any other appliance that produces heat. 

They also said that if you're using a space heater, keep anything flammable at least three feet away from it, turn it off when you leave the room or go to bed, and make sure you have working smoke alarms in your home.

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