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Authorities: Smoking materials caused fire that killed 2 men

September 26, 2018

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (AP) — Discarded smoking materials caused a fire that killed two men in a western Michigan adult foster care home.

Grand Rapids fire investigators say Saturday’s blaze started in the front porch area of the home where residents normally smoked.

Firefighters found 19-year-old Michael Kolenbrander and 69-year-old Daniel Foster in second-floor bedrooms. Both men died of asphyxiation due to smoke inhalation. Eleven other people inside the house made it to safety.

Heavy flames were coming from the front of the 2½-story house when firefighters arrived early Saturday morning.

Fire officials said Wednesday that high winds, possible delays in notifying the fire department and possible delays in activating the smoke alarm system in the house contributed to the severity of the fire.

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