Officials to provide update on fatal Hamilton fire


Published January 3, 2023 at 12:58 pm

Hamilton fire update
The residence at 14 Derby St. (Peter Power, The Canadian Press)

Officials are set to provide an update this afternoon on a fatal fire in Hamilton that killed four people, including two children, last week.

Ontario Fire Marshal Jon Pegg is also expected to speak about fire fatalities in 2022 at the 3 p.m. news conference, where he will appear alongside Hamilton Fire Chief Dave Cunliffe.

Police have said they were called to help with the townhouse fire in southeast Hamilton late Thursday night and found six people inside who were taken to hospital.

Two adults and two children were later pronounced dead after firefighters pulled them from the second floor of the house, while two other adults were in stable condition as of early Friday morning.

Police have yet to confirm the victims’ identities, the relation between them or details about the other two people who survived.

Witnesses said neighbours rushed towards a burning Hamilton home with ladders as children inside screamed for help.

Juliana Tavares, a family friend of the residents of the unit, said some of the people in the house were related and the kids were a brother and sister with “an amazing bond.”

Investigator Mike Ross with Ontario’s Office of the Fire Marshal previously said there was no evidence of working smoke alarms in the house as of Friday afternoon.

Ross said that the preliminary investigation suggested the fire started and spread across the entire ground floor before migrating up the stairs and to the second floor where it caused some damage.

— The Canadian Press, produced with the financial assistance of the Meta and Canadian Press News Fellowship.

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