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3 children dead in N.C. house fire

Parents were not at home at the time of the Concord fire and the cause is under investigation

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By Mark Price
The Charlotte Observer

CONCORD, N.C. — A 16-year-old girl died late Sunday, Aug. 20, bringing the death toll to three in connection with an early-morning fire in a Concord home, city officials said.

Identities of the three, who were siblings, have not been released.

“Two of the siblings, an 11-year-old girl, and a 15-year-old boy, died at the scene. The oldest sibling, a 16-year-old girl, was transported to the hospital in critical condition,” officials said in a news release. “She sadly succumbed to her injuries (Sunday) evening.”

The cause of the fire remains under investigation.

It happened around 1 a.m. on Aug. 20 at a single-story duplex east of Marvin Caldwell Park, city officials said. Concord is about 25 miles northeast of uptown Charlotte.

Firefighters arrived “to find heavy fire showing from one of the units” and extinguished the blaze in about 15 minutes.

The three juveniles were found during a search of the home, officials said.

No other occupants were found inside, and “the parents were not home at the time,” officials said.

Residents of the adjacent unit were ”safely evacuated” before firefighters arrived, officials said.

Flames did not spread to the adjacent apartment but it “sustained heat and water damage.”

The duplex is owned by the city and managed by the Concord Housing Administration, which has a nearby office. Its smoke detectors were working when they were last checked in January, The fire department told WSOC, the Charlotte Observer’s news partner.

The American Red Cross is helping the displaced residents find emergency housing, officials said.

Julia Coin contributed to this report.

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