Maryland probe may take days to determine if family died in mansion fire

21 Jan 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Annapolis mansion burning a day later; 6 people still missing.

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) — As fire officials search for six people who have been missing since a massive fire destroyed a waterfront mansion in Maryland’s capital city, they are focusing on the charred ruins where relatives say they believe the missing people were at the time of the fire. ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WJZ/AP) — Just 24 hours after an Annapolis mansion is destroyed by a fire, reports are surfacing that the six family members unaccounted for were still inside the home when it caught fire.

Firefighters are still unable to enter an Annapolis home destroyed by fire, more than a day after the blaze, because they’re concerned about a possible structural collapse. Investigators will likely begin searching what remains of the 16,000-square-foot multi-million dollar mansion on Wednesday, said Russ Davies, a spokesman for the Anne Arundel County Fire Department. According to WJZ media partner The Baltimore Sun, a letter from the headmaster at the Severn School — where the children attended — IT executive Don Pyle, his wife Sandy and their four grandchildren perished in the fire at 936 Childs Point Road. “We know who’s unaccounted for,” said Capt.

Previously he had said the occupants might have been out of town, but he later disclosed: “After interviews with the family, it has been determined that six members of the family are not accounted for.” The fire, which began around 3:30 a.m. The department is bringing in cranes to move steel beams, and fire crews are working to either brace unstable walls or take down walls that are likely to fall.

Monday morning, quickly ripped through the 16,000 square-foot home damaging floors and floors so quickly, it was impossible for firefighters to conduct a search safely Monday. Six people are unaccounted for, including Don Pyle, an executive at ScienceLogic, a company used to monitor the online networks of the FBI and the Department of Defense. On Tuesday, federal fire investigators were expected to arrive after first light, seeking a cause for the flames that gutted the 16,000-square foot home with seven bedrooms and 7 1/2 baths. Davies says a search will begin when crews stabilize the structure and pump out tens of thousands of gallons of water from the basement — likely Wednesday.

Online records of the Maryland Department of Assessments and Taxation list Don and Sandra Pyle as owners of the home, which the records say is their principal residence. Neighbors say some of those who are missing could be children, as the couple who lives in the house was due to leave Monday on a trip with some of their grandchildren. Davies said, but cautioned it will be slow going because of pockets of fire still hidden under the rubble. “With the roof and the second floor and first floor collapsed into the basement, it’s created some pockets we can’t reach from the outside,” he told. Davies said because there was no fire hydrant in the area, firefighters shuttled water tankers to the site and stationed a fire boat at a pier near the property to bring in water. Howarth said that is common practice when there are no eyewitnesses, and means only that whatever is recovered in the investigation will be admissible in court.

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