Fire claims lives of 2 children

May 13, 2009 5:44:38 AM PDT
Firefighters were called out to a house fire in Exeter Saturday morning. Two young children died in the blaze on the 5800 block Oley Turnpike Road.

The victims are identified as a 20-month-old toddler and a 9-year-old boy.

The two children were trapped inside the home when fire broke around 10:00 a.m. Saturday morning.

On Sunday, the coroner said the children died by accident, however investigators say it is still under investigation.

The toddler's father, who is also the boy's brother, tried to rescue the children, but the flames were too fierce. Click to see photos of the fire courtesy of the Reading Eagle.

The fire burned for several hours, escalating up to a second alarm, before fire crews were able to get it under control.

"It was fast. All you saw was smoke pouring out of the house and then there were flames," neighbor Sue Weaver said.

Police were first arrive and saw a house engulfed in flames.

"It was a very rapid moving fire, as what I was told by the officers on location, from the time they got here; basically, the structure was fully involved," police officer Christopher Neidert said.

Apparently, firefighters were hampered by the lack of hydrants in the area.

Tanker trucks had to be called in to help extinguish the fire.

According to investigators, the mother and two other survivng children are said to be in a nearby hotel.

Firefighters also experienced some injuries during the blaze.

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