House fire claims one
By: CARISSA HEBERT
MAMOU - A house fire in Mamou claimed the life of one Thursday evening, October 30.
The Mamou Volunteer Fire Department responded to a house fire Thursday at 712 Railroad Street, at approximately 8:24 p.m. District Fire Chief Garry Reed said the Mamou Police Department discovered the fire and contacted the department. Within three minutes, the department was on the scene and fighting a fully-engulfed house fire. At that time, neighbors informed them a woman was in the house in a bedroom. Firemen began concentrating on the bedroom and making entry into that area. They found a deceased female, later identified as Paula Edwards, approximately 44, on the floor in the bedroom area.
Reed said the fire marshal’s office was contacted, as per protocol, to investigate. Marshal Keith Reed is investigating the fire at this time, which Chief Reed said appears to be accidental.
Chief Reed said Edwards was by herself in the home. It is estimated damage of the wooden structure totaled $20,000 and the contents, $10,000. Despite rumors after the fire, the department never ran out of water. However, they did have a problem with crowd control, so the police department assisted them by dispersing the crowd. “They did an excellent job assisting the fire department.”
Chief Reed said the Mamou Fire Department responded with 16 firefighters and three pumpers and one service truck. Assistance was called for and W.C. Read sent 10 firefighters and Vidrine sent seven for a total of 33 firefighters. The fire was brought under control within 30 minutes, but the department remained on the scene for three hours to assist with the investigation.
He said the Evangeline Parish Coroner also was called to the scene.