JEFFERSON COUNTY, AL (WBRC) - Authorities believe a mobile home fire that killed two toddlers in Mulga was accidental.
The Feb. 26 fire was most likely caused by a Coleman camping stove, according to an email from the Alabama Department of Insurance. The home had no smoke detectors.
Authorities say the father of two-year-old Brylee Dodd and one-year-old Joseph Dodd, Jr. tried to save them from a fully engulfed mobile home fire in the 1400 block of Little River Trail just after midnight. However, he was unable to reach them due to the intensity of the fire, according to the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office.
The two children were found after the fire was extinguished.
Assistant Chief Wade Holly with Birmingport Fire tells WBRC they were on the scene less than five minutes after they got the call. He said the department made every attempt to get the children, but the fire was so intense they had to pull back and try to cool it off before they could go any further.
“We heard the parents,” said neighbor Daryl Whittle. “We heard them over there, literally crying. It really broke our hearts.”
“Our prayers go out to the family and the parents, because I know they were really heart broken last night,” said Whittle.
One firefighter received minor injuries when he fell through the floor, but continued to fight the fire.
The Alabama State Fire Marshal is investigating the blaze but says foul play is not suspected.