A house fire in South Bend has killed 5 children and injured another

The burned-out shell of a two-story house is quiet, Monday, Jan. 22, 2024, after a fire the day before at a house on N. LaPorte Avenue, where five children died in the blaze. (Greg Swiercz/South Bend Tribune via AP)

Fire tore through a house in South Bend, killing five children and leaving a sixth in treatment Monday for burns.

People, including children, were trapped by flames on the second floor Sunday evening, the South Bend Fire Department said.

Five children were pronounced dead. The sixth was taken to a hospital and later airlifted to one in Indianapolis.

An adult escaped with minor injuries, and a firefighter fell through the second floor, officials said. The firefighter was treated at a hospital and released.

The children ranged in age from 17 months to 11 years, Fire Chief Carl Buchanon told reporters Monday. The 11-year-old remained hospitalized.

The fire was reported about 6:30 p.m. Sunday and spread rapidly, partly because of wind, Buchanon said. Crews battled the blaze for about three hours.

The adult who escaped told firefighters how many people were inside and had tried to rescue some but was forced back by heavy smoke and flames, Buchanon said.

The cause of the fire was being investigated.  (AP)

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