Investigators determine cause of Bensalem fire

- Fire Investigators have determined that a Bensalem house fire originated in the living room of the structure and was accidental in nature (electrical). 

SKYFOX was over the single family home in the 2700 block of June Avenue Wednesday.

Battalion Chief Rob Sponheimer said the home was fully engulfed at 6:30 a.m. and was declared under control abut 30 minutes later, before 7 a.m.

Officials say 39-year-old Tabetha Oakes Rutecki, who was outside, went back in to save a dog. Crews tried to rescue her. Instead, they found her body on the first floor.

As Battalion Chief Sponheimer put it, “Once you’re out, stay out,” and let authorities know.

Two survivors were able to safely make it out of the home along with one dog. They were taken to the hospital for possible smoke inhalation and burns. A firefighter also suffered minor injuries.

Authorities say a few other pets did die in the fire.

There were about 50 to 60 firefighters on the scene, some from other municipalities.

Firefighters say the fire in the wood-framed house spread fast, and an oxygen tank may have exploded early on in the fire. Crews say plywood above the ceiling and storage upstairs caused issues as they battled the flames.

Crews used saws to drill holes to ventilate, to get the heat and smoke out.

Two cars in the driveway next to the house were destroyed.

It’s not yet known whether there were smoke detectors in the house.

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