One Person Found Dead in Pocket-Area Duplex Fire

SOUTH SACRAMENTO -- One man is dead after a fire consumed a duplex in South Sacramento county early Friday morning near Reichmuth Park.

Around 2 a.m., when the first engines made their way to the duplex on Johnfer Way, it was already filled with flames.

Cpt. Keith Wade of the Sacramento Fire Department said, “They initiated their attack through the front door, conditions had worsened so they had to redirect their attack to the back of the structure."

It took firefighters 15 minutes to put out the fire. Immediately after the first pass through of the duplex, firefighters believed no one was inside but a neighbor quickly told crews the man who lives inside was not picking up his phone. So, they took a second look inside the home.

“We were able to locate a victim, but he succumbed to the fire in the front living room,” said Wade.

Because crews were able to respond so quickly, they were able to contain the flames to just this side of the duplex, but the other side did sustain some smoke damage. FOX40 spoke to a woman who lives in the duplex off camera; she says she is just happy to be alive and she’s thankful for her smoke alarm.

“You know she was alerted by her smoke detector which was awesome. It’s actually one of those smoke detectors that verbalize fire,” Wade said.

Even with neighbors banging on her door, it was the fire alarm that woke her up and out the door before it was too late. Cpt. Keith Wade says it should be a good reminder for people at home.

“Check your batteries, change them often because smoke detectors do save lives.” Wade stated.

It did save one life, but another was lost and that is something Wade says it not an easy thing to forget.

“This is a moment that will affect every member that responded because you want to have that opportunity save someone’s life and you give it your all and you give it your best shot,” Wade expressed.