House fire kills three in Montevallo

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, September 30, 2003

An early Friday morning house fire near Montevallo has resulted in the death of a man, a woman, and

her 18-month-old daughter.

Shelby County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to the 100 block of County Road 221 in the Dogwood Community at about 3 a.m. last Friday to investigate a house fire, according to a Sheriff’s Office report.

According to the Sheriff’s Office, deputies arrived to find a house fully involved and the East Shelby Fire Department fighting the blaze. Shelco and Pea Ridge Fire Departments also responded with mutual to assist in fire suppression.

The Sheriff’s Office reported that members of the fire department discovered

one adult male, one adult female and a small child deceased in the residence. According to media reports, the dead were identified as Edwin Earl Lunsford, 40; his wife, Heather Lunsford, 27, and her daughter, 18-month-old Brianna Cheyenne Carter.

It was reported that West Shelby Fire Chief Lynn Hood said the 2:52 a.m. blaze may have been caused by electrical writing.

And he said the victims were all right at the locked front door.

It was also reported that the century-old house had been moved from Birmingham about 25 years earlier and still had original wiring.

The Shelby County Sheriff’s Office said it will assist the State of Alabama Fire Marshal’s Office with the continuing investigation.

&uot;This is a tragic and devastating loss to the victim’s family and the dogwood community. Our thoughts and prayers are with them,&uot; said Sheriff Chris Curry.

According to the U.S. Fire Administration many fire deaths are preventable. While more than 4,000 Americans die in fires each year and more than 25,000 are injured, the USFA, reports that many might be alive today if they only had the information they needed to avoid a disaster.

The following is a list of life-saving tips:

*Place a smoke alarm on each level of your home and in all outside bedrooms.

*Check smoke alarms monthly by pushing the test button. Use a broom handle if necessary.

*Change the batteries in alarms twice a year &045; perhaps when clocks are changed for Daylight Savings Time.

*Teach children what the smoke alarm sounds like and what to do &045; leave the building immediately by crawling under the smoke when they hear the alarm sound.

*If cooking smoke sets off the alarm, do not disable it. Turn on the range fan, open a window or wave a towel near the alarm.

*Do not remove the batteries to put in other appliances such as personal stereos or games.

*Replace your smoke alarm if it is 10-year-old or older.

*Consider buying a lithium battery-powered smoke alarm which will operate for 10 years and is seated so it cannot be tampered with or opened.

Nearly half the residential fires and three-fifths of residential fatalities occur in homes with no smoke alarm. Having a smoke alarm more than doubles one’s chances of surviving a fire