Fatal fire in Oakdale

8:43 AM, Jan 29, 2007   |    comments
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Authorities say a 61-year-old Oakdale man tried to escape his burning trailer home Sunday morning, but couldn't get out fast enough. "He was found within a few feet of the door," said Chief Jeff Anderson, of the Oakdale Fire Department. Investigators say the fire started in the kitchen around nine Saturday morning. Drivers on Highway 36, not far from the home, saw smoke and flames and called 911. "Mobile homes do tend to, when they catch fire, tend to burn rather rapidly and with the wind today, that helped push the fire through the home," said Chief Anderson. Oakdale police have not yet released the victim's name. They said he has five grown children who have not yet been notified. One neighbor describes the victim as a loner. "He was a very nice man," said Russ Ubel, who lives next to the gutted trailer. "He used to have his family over for the 4th of July, and they'd shoot fireworks off and whatever, but he was pretty quiet. Kind of a hermit type person." Investigators said they don't yet know the cause of the fire. They said they also don't know if there was a working smoke detector inside the home.

By Julianna Olsen, KARE 11 News

(Copyright 2007 by KARE. All Rights Reserved.)

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