Parkersburg man dies in early Friday fire
PARKERSBURG — A man was found dead inside a house that caught fire early Friday morning, Parkersburg Fire Chief Jason Matthews said.
The fire at 11 Pickering St. in south Parkersburg was reported at 4:19 a.m. When firefighters arrived minutes later, they found “heavy fire, (a) fully involved single-wide trailer with partial collapse in the center of the structure,” Matthews said.
Firefighters initially attacked the fire inside the structure but encountered a lot of debris inside, the chief said. When a portion of the interior and the floor began collapse, they were forced outside for a time. When they re-entered, they found the deceased male, Matthews said.
The body has been sent to the West Virginia Medical Examiner’s Office for an autopsy and identification.
Matthews could not say if the deceased individual was the occupant of the house, pending identification.
Because of the amount of combustible material inside the trailer — including furniture, clothing and other items — it took 45 minutes to get the fire under control and another hour to fully extinguish it, Matthews said.
Firefighters and investigators from the West Virginia Fire Marshal’s Office remained on the scene Friday afternoon. Matthews said the cause of the fire was still under investigation.
Evan Bevins can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.