FITCHBURG, Wis. (WMTV) — A fire that ripped through an apartment complex in Fitchburg late Tuesday night claimed the life of a 64-year-old man, firefighters said Thursday. Authorities had previously reported only one injury from the fire.
According to an update from the FPD, the 64-year-old’s body was discovered as firefighters searched the apartment after bringing smoke and flames under control. The fire started in a plastic trash can, reached the kitchen cabinets, then spread throughout the apartment, investigators found.
As smoke filled the apartment, the 64-year-old man, identified as Timothy Trummer, and the other occupant attempted to put out the fire with water. The smoke eventually pushed the second individual onto the balcony, and that person was taken to hospital for smoke inhalation.
The fire, which had broken out shortly before midnight, escaped the apartment as flames reached the second floor hallway. The first firefighters to reach the complex, at 2118 Red Arrow Trail, brought the blaze under control.
Everyone in the building got out safely. Madison Metro sent a bus to help the number of people forced from their homes into temporary shelter.
“This is a devastating incident. The Department offers its deepest condolences to the family and friends of the deceased. Incidents like this underscore the importance of early fire detection by installing and properly operating fire alarms. smoke in your residence,” Deputy Fire Chief Chad Grossen said.
The fire department added that it was unclear whether the apartment’s smoke detectors were working at the time. The fire department had noted on Wednesday that the building lacked an automatic sprinkler system, which it described as vital to saving lives and protecting property.
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