Va. Woman Dies After Suffering Burns in House Fire

Feb. 01--A Lynchburg woman died Thursday after sustaining "significant" burns in a house fire, authorities said.

Shortly before 7:30 a.m., 77-year-old Mary Hart tried to warm herself by her gas stove when she caught fire in her home at 722 Polk St., Lynchburg Assistant Fire Marshal Matt O'Daniel said Friday.

O'Daniel said Hart called dispatchers to report the burns. The fire spread, igniting two places within the home.

Firefighters responded Thursday morning and extinguished the flames within minutes.

O'Daniel could not provide a time of death, but said Hart succumbed to her injuries shortly after the morning fire.

Fire officials previously said Hart reported an explosion may have occurred. O'Daniel said he was unaware of any explosion.

The last time a house fire claimed a life in the Lynchburg area was Oct. 20, after flames erupted inside a Nelson County motor home.

Barbara Beach, 75, and Marvin Boggs, 68, were killed in the blaze off of Bob's Creek Lane, Virginia State Police have said. Police indicated the fire was sparked by a heat source used to warm the motor home.

The Lynchburg Fire Marshal's Office has determined the causes of two other recent Lynchburg fires.

Flames broke out Wednesday evening inside the residence at 520 Old Trents Ferry Road. O'Daniel said the blaze resulted from a "fault with the woodstove" in the basement. A female resident escaped unharmed through a window.

Fire crews responded Thursday afternoon to fire at 2515 Circle Road, off Linkhorne Drive. O'Daniel said an electrical short in an exterior light caused the home to catch fire. No one was injured.

O'Daniel said none of the homes were a total loss, though the residence at Old Trents Ferry Road sustained the most damage.

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