Four students die in Hoover hotel fire, two from Alabama

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) — Authorities say four victims killed when a fire swept through a Days Inn motel in Hoover on Saturday night were college coeds heading back to their campus in Mississippi.

The Jefferson County Coroner's Office says the women were on their way back to Mississippi University for Women, which is in Columbus, Miss. 

Two of the victims were 18-year-old cousins.   They are identified by officials and a relative as Alondan Turner and Catherine Muse, both of Cordova, Ala.

The victims were students at Mississippi University, which is about 90 miles west of Hoover, Ala, the site of the Days Inn fire. Officials didn't immediately know what started the blaze Saturday night or where it began.

A Hoover Fire Department spokesman says the victims were among those who made 911 calls to report the fire. Firefighters knew the women were trapped in their second-floor room, but couldn't get to them because of the flames.

Alabama State Fire Marshal Ed Paulk says his office has been asked by the Hoover Fire Department to help in the investigation

The fire was reported at 8:15 p.m. Saturday.

Lowe says firefighters discovered the victims only after putting the fire down.

Information from: The Birmingham News, http://www.al.com/birminghamnews

Copyright 2010 The Associated Press.