Three dead and two injured in Hamilton house fire, police say

By The Canadian Press
October 2, 2016 - 7:15am

HAMILTON — Three people are dead and three more were taken to hospital after a house fire near the industrial district of Hamilton, Ont., late Saturday night.

Staff Sgt. Marco Del Conte of the Hamilton Police said two people remained in hospital Sunday morning.

Images from the scene show smoke billowing down a residential street, lit by the flashing lights of fire trucks, police cars and ambulances.

According to media reports, two residents of the home were sent to hospital and the third was a neighbour who rushed into the building to try and help.

The identities of the deceased have not been released.

Del Conte said he couldn't release any more information because the Fire Marshal's Office is investigating the cause of the blaze.

But Shirley Haines, who has lived in the house next door for more than 50 years, said she rushed out of her house shortly after 10 p.m., and saw smoke.

She said she knew the owner of the house, who had lived there as long as she had. His parents owned the house before he did, she said.

"The other people I don't know," she added. "There was a lot of people who lived there, I think."

She said one of the residents of the house was blind, and she hasn't heard whether he's OK.

Belinda Richard, who lives near the house on Grenfell Street, said she noticed flashing lights from her bedroom window Saturday night.

She said she rushed outside and noticed flames and smoke billowing from the back of the house.

Richard, who did not know the people living there, said that as crews were fighting the blaze, the house was surrounded by police officers, neighbours and reporters.

She added that police had to set up a wider perimeter around the house to keep onlookers back.

"It was chaos," she said of the scene. "I have never seen so many police officers, fire trucks and ambulances all in one spot."

The Fire Marshal's Office has not returned multiple requests for comment.

Nicole Thompson and Daniela Germano, The Canadian Press

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