Cause of fatal Hammond house fire still undetermined

2013-05-06T17:25:00Z 2013-05-06T23:22:06Z Cause of fatal Hammond house fire still undeterminedChelsea Schneider Kirk chelsea.schneider@nwi.com, (219) 933-3241 nwitimes.com

HAMMOND | The cause of a fatal house fire over the weekend in the 4300 block of Torrence Avenue remained undetermined Monday, officials said.

A 55-year-old woman and 11-year-old boy rescued from the house Saturday were still in the hospital on Monday, Hammond Deputy Fire Chief Kevin Margraf said.

Roy Krieger, 85, died Saturday night from injuries sustained in the fire after being airlifted to the University of Chicago Medical Center. Krieger's death was ruled accidental by the Cook County medical examiner's office.

The state fire marshal's office investigated the house on Monday, Margraf said. The Hammond Fire Department also is working to verify if the house had insurance.

Margraf said rescuing the people from the home took “heroic efforts” from firefighters on the scene.

“Anytime you rescue somebody in a home in a condition like this you deal with direct fire and heat and smoke where you can't see,” Margraf said.

Firefighters knocked in the back door and found the woman nearby. Firefighters then searched through the house's bedrooms, where they found the 85-year-old man with furniture lying on top of him, Margraf said. Firefighters carried the man from the house and initiated CPR.

Margraf said the 11-year-old boy was rescued by a neighbor.

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