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2 children killed in northern Louisiana house fire

September 9, 2019

HODGE, La. (AP) — Two children died in a late-night house fire in northern Louisiana over the weekend, fire officials said.

In a news release, the State Fire Marshal said the fire happened Saturday night in the town of Hodge.

Firefighters arrived on the scene around 10 p.m.

They learned that five children and one adult were inside the home when the fire began but two of the children were not able to make it out.

Firefighters found the bodies of the two children in the master bedroom.

Witnesses told fire marshal investigators that one of the children was playing with a lighter and accidentally caught a couch on fire.

According to the news release, the adult man who was at home when the fire erupted was able to get the older children out of the house and tried to put out the fire. Witnesses told investigators that he also tried to reach the two children who were still inside the house but was unable to get to them.

The victims are believed to be an almost 2-month-old girl and a 3-year-old boy.

The other children — an 8-year-old, a 7-year-old and a 4-year-old — were taken to the hospital for examination and then released.

State Fire Marshal, Burch Browning, said this is the second fire in as many weeks involving children getting access to materials that can start fires and called on people to take steps to protect children.

“I cannot emphasize enough the importance of, first and foremost, keeping lighters and matches away from the reach of children, but secondly, teaching children about the dangers of playing with fire,” he said. “This is a heartbreaking case that I hope motivates other families to take these two simple steps to prevent something similar from affecting their loved ones and properties.”

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