1 dead in Titusville house fire

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) — As the temperatures continue to drop, many people will head indoors and turn up the heat. But the act of staying warm may have cost one man his life earlier today.

Birmingham Fire Department says the two most common fires in the city are kitchen and space heater fires. Today it’s believed a space heater caused a house in the Titusville community to go up in flames.

“When we got here the roof was collapsed,” says Lt. Bryan Harrell of the Birmingham Fire Department. “So that did probably have a cause in how fast it did spread.”

Roaring flames, thick black smoke and lots of water was dumped on the fire tearing through the home. But when it was all said and done, emergency crews made a gruesome discovery.

“We do have a confirmed fatality,” says Harrell. “He was found in the back of the house.”

The man, 74 year old Milton Bray Jr., was a fixture in this Titusville neighborhood.

“He was a person that when you saw him he was going to find a way that was going to make you laugh,” says Bray’s longtime friend Charles Mosley. “He was that kind of person. He was a funny person, comical person and he’s going to be missed in the neighborhood.”

And with more days of below freezing temps expected fire investigators say now is the time to be even more vigilant about heating our homes.

“We just want to remind people that space heaters do need space. At least three feet all the way around,” says Harrell. “Don’t use extension cords for space heaters and space heaters are only a temporary source of heat.”

Also if you are in need of a smoke detector for your home, you can pick on up for free at any Birmingham Fire station in the city.


2014 WIAT-TV CBS42

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