Suffolk officials say cause of fatal fire was ruled accidental

Posted at 2:23 PM, Dec 13, 2012
and last updated 2012-12-13 14:23:44-05

SUFFOLK, Va. – The Suffolk Fire Marshal’s Office tells NewsChannel 3 that the cause of a fatal house fire has been determined to be accidental. They say the fire originated inside the kitchen.

On Saturday, December 1, 2012, Suffolk Fire & Rescue crews responded to a house fire in the 100 block of Mallard Drive, located in the Burnett’s Mill subdivision. The call came in at approximately 9:00 a.m.

Crews arrived at 9:06 a.m. Firefighters were told that an elderly woman was still inside the home. Officials say her sister had crawled from the residence and was being assisted by neighbors at the scene. The woman was located by firefighters approximately 20 feet within the single-story home, which was fully engulfed in flames at the time.

The fire was under control at 9:27 a.m., with more than half of the home destroyed by fire.

Police say the victim was transported by ambulance to Sentara Obici Hospital, and was then airlifted to Sentara Norfolk General Hospital to be treated for smoke inhalation and burns to her body.

The victims have been identified as 64-year-old Janet Boyle, the homeowner; and 69-year-old Mary Rodgers, who was transported via Nightingale to Sentara Norfolk General Hospital.

One firefighter was also transported to Sentara Obici Hospital with minor burns to both of his ears.

Two dogs escaped the house fire, and were being cared for by neighbors. One cat was found dead inside the home.

Mary Rodgers of Suffolk, Virginia, died December 2, 2012 at Sentara Norfolk General Hospital.

NewsChannel 3 will release updates as they become available.