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Hawthorne house fire under investigation

February 26, 2013 12:00:00 AM PST
An investigation is under way to determine what caused a house fire that killed a man and injured a woman in Hawthorne.

Firefighters responded to a house fully engulfed in flames on the 3500 block of West 135th Street near Cerise Avenue Tuesday around 6:15 a.m.

When they arrived at the scene, authorities said they found a male double amputee in his 70s and a 50-year-old elderly woman suffering from smoke inhalation.

Coroners said both victims were transported to the hospital but the man was shortly pronounced dead. The elderly woman's condition remains unknown, according to sheriff's Lt. Jeff Adams.

Authorities said its unknown if smoke detectors inside the home alerted the residents.

"None were heard by fire department personnel but that does not mean that there weren't smoke detectors in the house," L.A. County Fire Department Inspector Brian Riley said. "We didn't hear any when we got on scene."

Officials said it took firefighters about 10 minutes to knock down the blaze.

No indication of foul play was reported. Homicide and arson investigators are investigating the cause of the fire which is reportedly standard procedure when a fire involves a fatality.

Two dogs also died in the blaze.


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