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Fire Officials: Hoarding in Moodus house that burned

MOODUS- A mother and her son were lucky to escape serious injury during an early morning fire at their home in the Moodus section of East Haddam early this morn...

MOODUS- A mother and her son were lucky to escape serious injury during an early morning fire at their home in the Moodus section of East Haddam early this morning. Firefighters were also fortunate.

Only a charred chimney was recognizable among the remains of a residence on Triangle Dr., on Lower Moodus Reservoir.

"It’s part of a neighborhood full of homes that are typically only occupied during the summer months. However, the folks, who owned this house, were here quite a bit, year round, according to a neighbor.

Upon arrival, during the 3 o’clock hour Thursday morning, there wasn’t much firefighters could do to save the home.
There was multiple exposures.

“A camper, a couple of vehicles, a small shed,” said Capt. John Sarnik of the East Haddam Fire Department. “Both occupants were out of the house on our arrival.”

The occupants - a mother and son - were taken to a local hospital with non-life-threatening injuries, according to officials.

A next-door neighbor Tells FOX61 she has always been concerned about the property.

“We've never ever been inside the home,” said neighbor Diane Trusty. “It’s just, you know, pretty much what you can see outside, which is you know a lot of stuff.”

Sarnik said it was a case of hoarding, both inside and out. And, while it wasn’t necessary for firefighters to be inside the structure this time, hoarding can be very dangerous for them.

“We can get tangled up in piles of who knows what and it makes it a lot easier to get disoriented,” said Sarnik. “There’s a potential of you know rooms where egress is being blocked.”

He said the rear of the home was almost inaccessible because the property was littered with obstacles.Luckily, it was a smaller building and, with the use of a ladder truck, we are able to put water on it from above.

And, again, being a seasonal home, and you know you worry about people staying warm you figure people are trying to stay warm somehow,” said Trusty.

Captain Sarnik says there has been no preliminary cause determined.

The State Police Fire & Explosion Investigation Unit (FEIU) will be assisting the local Fire Marshal and Troop K in working to determine the origin and cause of the fire.