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One dead after overloaded circuit results in ‘flash fire’, massive blaze in Oneida County

State police in Oneida County are investigating a fatal fire that happened in the town of Lee.

According to a news release, first responders were called to 5357 Lee Valley Road around 9:30 p.m. after an occupant of a home there said her house was on fire.

Troopers along with Lee Center firefighters responded discovering a fully-engulfed house fire.

A preliminary investigation determined that Carley Reed, 20, was able to escape and alerted 911 that her mother, Loretta Reed, 57, was still inside and bedridden due to an illness.


Carley began yelling for help upon escaping the residence, and two men, who were passing by the home heard her yelling for help. They ran into the house to assist troopers in pulling Loretta out.

Despite those efforts, the 57-year-old was pronounced dead at the scene.

The Office of Fire Prevention and Control (OFPC) responded to the scene and determined that an overloaded circuit containing an air conditioner, TV, and oxygen compressor, coupled with oxygen tanks used by the victim, sparked an immediate and intense flash fire where the victim was located.

The fire appears to be accidental in nature. However the investigation remains active.

State Police were assisted at the scene by Lee Center Fire Department, Taberg Fire Department, and Western Fire Department.



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