The fire was too heavy to save two children who were trapped inside their home, the St. Charles Ambulance District said.
DEFIANCE, Mo. — Two children were killed after an explosion Friday morning in St. Charles County.
Crews responded to a house fire at about 7:45 a.m. Friday in the 2900 block of Highway 94 South in Defiance. An explosion of unknown origin occurred in the same block. St. Charles County police were the first at the scene, but they could not immediately go into the home because of the flames, according to a spokesperson with the St. Charles Ambulance District.
According to a joint news release from the Augusta, St. Charles County and Cottleville fire districts, the New Melle 8914 fire crew was the first on the scene at 8:01 a.m.
“8914 bravely entered a rear bedroom from a window and searched for victims but were forced back out of the window due to extreme heat and fire conditions,” the release said. “The crew made a second attempt through a second window, but were again forced out due to extreme heat and fire conditions.”
By this time, more crews had arrived and began a fire attack, allowing firefighters to successfully enter and find the two victims, ages 4 and 6.
Paramedics tried to resuscitate the children but they were later pronounced dead at the scene.
The release joint release said three other people who were in the home at the time of the fire survived.
A St. Charles Ambulance District spokesperson said one adult suffered a minor injury and was treated at the scene.
A St. Charles County officer who was first at the scene also suffered a minor injury, according to the district.
St. Charles Councilman Joe Brazil lives in the area and was one of many neighbors who rushed to the scene.
“It was a huge fire. The trucks were on fire and I didn’t know the kids were in the house still. There was so much smoke and then I saw the grandparents…the grandfather and he was full of soot and told me the kids were still in the house, it’s terrible,” Brazil said.
Kyle Gaines with the St. Charles Ambulance District said the weather made it harder
to fight the fire.
“Weather conditions today made for a very challenging fire fighting scene and rescuing scene in general. We’ve got a total of six ambulances here on scene working to rehab our firefighter partners,” Gaines said. “Obviously, a really challenging day, of course, for the family and the first responders. These are among the most challenging that we are called to and our condolences are with the family today,”
This is a breaking news story. 5 On Your Side will update it as more information becomes available.