St. Paul Firefighters Rescue Girl, 9, From Burning House

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – Firefighters in St. Paul rescued a 9-year-old girl Monday morning after a fire started in an illegal basement bedroom, officials say.

The St. Paul Fire Department says crews were called to the fire on 343 Maple Street just before 11 a.m. When they arrived at the scene, everyone had escaped from the fire, except a 9-year-old girl.

Firefighters then searched the home and found her in the basement.

“Firefighters brought a line in, down a very narrow stairs and found her near a burning mattress,” Fire Marshall Steve Zaccard said.

The fire started in an illegal basement bedroom. There was no fire escape or smoke alarm, officials say. The girl was trapped and overcome by smoke.

“Any room used for sleeping must have an escape-size window. That’s a minimum dimension of 24 inches, and with a total opening of 5.7 feet out. It has to be big enough for someone to get out of, and for firefighters to get into,” he said.

Zaccard says the fire and illegal bedroom is being investigated.

The girl is at Regions Hospital where she is expected to survive.

The American Red Cross is assisting the seven people displaced, providing the four adults and three children with shelter, food and seasonal clothing.

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