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Apr 22

Press Release: Residential Structure Fire Fatality

CITY OF IMLAY CITY FIRE DEPT

PRESS RELEASE, for immediate release

Fatality at a residential structure fire, 20 April 2013 in Imlay City, MI.

At 9:35 AM on 20 April 2013, Lapeer County Central Dispatch (911) received a call from the manager of an apartment complex in the 500 block of Townsend Court in Imlay City. The manager indicated that while checking on a smoke smell in one particular building, they had entered an apartment to check on the furnace. Upon entering the upstairs apartment, they found the apartment blackened by soot, the room temperature very hot and a person on the floor in the living room area. The caller believed the person to be deceased. Lapeer County 911 dispatchers had the caller start evacuating the entire 16 unit, two story building.FireBIG

Lapeer County Central Dispatch immediately sent Imlay City Police, Imlay City Fire Dept (ICFD), Attica Twp FD and Lapeer County EMS to the address for a structure fire. Imlay Police and fire departments arrived on scene within minutes of the call. First on scene responders found the upstairs apartment very hot, a lot of soot in the air and a deceased male in the living room. It was apparent that a fire had occurred in the apartment, but there were no flames showing on arrival. As the police began their investigation, the FD investigated for any extension of the fire into the attic areas and / or attached apartments. No additional fire was found and the displaced residents were allowed to reenter their apartments.

A medical examiner from the Lapeer County Sheriff’s Dept, as well as a State Police Fire Investigator was requested to the scene. Police then identified the victim as Kenneth Dahn, aged 22 of Imlay City. Mr. Dahn lived in the involved two-bedroom apartment. The exact cause of the victim’s death is undetermined at this time, but fire investigators believe inhalation and asphyxiation is a probability.

A preliminary fire investigation indicates there was a kitchen stove fire with a lot of smoke and carbon particles. The fire appears to have burned upwards from the stove top, through the cupboards, across the ceiling and spread out to the living room. It is believed Mr. Dahn may have been sitting on a living room chair, overcome with smoke and carbon monoxide and perished in the living room.

The investigation continues at this time. The fire is being deemed accidental and fire investigators are still trying to figure out the actual time of the fire and secondly, why the fire went out on its own. It is possible the fire used up all the oxygen, then went out on its own due to a lack of oxygen. There were three (3) smoke detectors in the apartment and one of the smoke detectors was sounding on arrival. An additional fire investigator is being requested for next week and some witnesses may be re-interviewed.

“Compared to the loss of a young man’s life, the fire damage was minimal. Kenny Dahn was a good kid who was known to us on the fire dept. His father and grandfather were both Imlay City Firefighters at a time, years ago, so we knew him from the time he was a little boy. This is a little tougher for us when it is someone you know, some tears were shed at our fire station. Words cannot express what Kenny’s family is going through. Our deepest sympathy to the entire Dahn family.” – Imlay City Fire Chief Kip Reaves
For any additional information, please contact D/Sgt Jason Parks at the Lapeer Co Sheriff’s Dept, detective division

Authority – Imlay City Fire Chief Kip Reaves, 20 April 2013
Contact 810.724.6262