Woman burned as fire engulfs Mesa home


by Jason Volentine

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Posted on March 18, 2013 at 9:29 PM

Updated Thursday, Mar 21 at 10:10 AM

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MESA, Ariz. -- A woman was found burned and unconscious inside a Mesa home that went up in flames on Monday night, according to a spokesman for the Mesa Fire Department.

It happened in a neighborhood near Stapley and University.

Capt. Forrest Smith said fire and paramedic crews from the Mesa Fire and Medical Department responded to an intense, rapidly spreading fire at a single-family home at approximately 7:45 p.m.

The first crew arriving on scene entered the front door and found an elderly woman unconscious and breathing just inside the entrance of the home. Emergency responders think it's possible she was making a run for the front door but couldn't get out before breathing in too much smoke and collapsing.

She was quickly removed by the crew and treated by Mesa Fire medics and transported to Maricopa County Medical Center for burn injuries.  

Firefighters think the flames broke out at the back of the home or in a shed behind the house where there were several propane tanks and other fuel sources. The containers of flammable material could be one reason why the fire was able to burn so intensely in such a short amount of time, engulfing much of the house and several trees and bushes in the backyard before crews arrived.

Crews took 35 minutes to control the fire that they kept from spreading from trees to a nearby home.