Child dies in Montreal North fire
A four-year-old died in a Montreal North apartment fire Friday morning.
The call to 9-1-1 came in around 6:30 a.m., the fire started in the kitchen when something was left burning on the stove, police believe.
The apartment is located on Matte street north of Maurice-Duplessis.
The family was still in the unit when firefighters arrived.
“It’s a family of six in that apartment,” said fire Chief Denis Roy. “Five got out, [fire fighters] evacuated the sixth one which is a young girl, she was hiding in her room under the bed.”
Fire fighters tried to resuscitate the girl without success, she was later declared dead in hospital.
When firefighters told a neighbour the news, she gasped and began crying.
“I can’t believe it, it’s so sad,” said the woman.
It’s not clear if there were smoke detectors in the apartment unit. But officials say they couldn’t hear any alarms when they got there. Officials say however that there are other units were equipped with the life-saving detectors.
“It’s very important to make sure they work and replace the batteries at least twice a year,” said chief Roy. “It’s very sad, it could have saved a life.”
He also said that it’s important to teach kids an evacuation plan as young as possible.
The fire was contained to that basement unit, however other nearby apartments sustained smoke building.
“My door melted,” said Kelly Tysick, who lives across the hall.
She was woken up by the smell of thick smoke that came pouring in through her light fixtures. That’s when the smoke detectors started going off in her apartment.
She said she knew the family since Halloween 2012. The couple just got a newborn, they also have a two-year-old boy, a 15-year-old boy, and it was the 4-year-old girl who died.
She believes the couple boiled water to heat up a milk bottle, but then forgot the burner on.
Tysick admitted she doesn’t have renter’s insurance but plans to get covered now.
Another neighbour, Lionel, said he couldn’t get down the stairs so had to jump off his second-story front balcony onto the snow below.
Photos: Michel Boyer, CJAD 800