Fire officials: Lynn home where 3-year-old girl died in fire had no working smoke alarms

The exact cause of the fire remains undetermined, but officials have not found any evidence of criminal conduct or signs that this was an intentional act.

Firefighters emerged from a single family home in Lynn where a two-alarm fire claimed a life of a 3-year-old girl. Jessica Rinaldi/Globe Staff

There were no working smoke alarms in the Lynn home where a 3-year-old girl died in a two-alarm fire early Tuesday morning, fire officials revealed Wednesday.

Lynn fire officials first received word of the fire at 7 Circuit Ave. at 4:05 a.m., and the first engine arrived on scene two minutes later.

Upon arrival, fire crews saw heavy fire and smoke. They were able to bring it under control after about 45 minutes.


The flames were contained to the building, but an adjacent home did experience some heat damage, according to a release from Lynn Fire Chief Stephen L. Archer, State Fire Marshal Peter J. Ostroskey, and Essex County District Attorney Jonathan W. Blodgett.


The exact cause of the fire remains undetermined, but officials have not found any evidence of criminal conduct or signs that this was an intentional act.

After investigating the scene, interviewing witnesses, and examining video footage and other evidence, local and state officials believe the fire started at the left front corner of the exterior of the house.

Though officials did not find any evidence that this fire was suspicious or purposefully set, “they were unable to rule out multiple accidental factors such as smoking materials or an electrical event,” the release noted.

“The exact cause of this fire will remain undetermined, but we know that smoking materials are the leading cause of fatal fires in Massachusetts,” Archer said. “If you smoke or have guests who do, always use a heavy ashtray with water or sand and remember to put it out, all the way, every time. Never discard cigarettes, matches, or other smoking materials on the ground where they can ignite mulch or dry leaves.”

Officials also emphasized the importance of having working smoking alarms throughout a home.

“Whatever else you do today, please take time to be sure you have working smoke alarms on every level of your home,” Ostroskey said.


“Check the manufacturing date printed on the back of the alarm,” the state fire marshal continued. “If there’s no date or if it’s more than 10 years old, replace it with a new alarm that has a hush feature and a sealed, long-life battery. We’ve found that these are less likely to be disabled. If your alarm takes alkaline batteries, put in fresh ones twice a year. This is a great time to put in fresh batteries to keep you protected through the spring.”

More than a dozen residents were displaced as a result of the fire. Several adults and children were taken to an area hospital to be checked out as a precaution.

The 3-year-old girl was initially unaccounted for until later that morning when she was found inside the home and pronounced dead at the scene, officials noted.

“Our thoughts remain with this child’s family, who lost a cherished loved one and the place they called home,” Archer said. “I know the community shares their grief for this terrible loss.”


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