STATE OF VERMONT
DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC SAFETY
VERMONT STATE POLICE
TROOPER: Detective Sergeant Thomas Williams and Division of Fire Safety Investigators
DATE/TIME: 10-24-2016 @ approximately 0339hrs.
LOCATION: 874 VT Route 22A, Panton , VT
VIOLATION: Structure Fire (Fatality & Injuries)
Owner: Harold & Muriel Neel
City of Residence: Same as above.
CITY, STATE OF RESIDENCE:
SUMMARY OF INCIDENT:
On 10-24-16 at approximately 0339 hrs. the Vergennes Fire Department responded to a reported structure fire at 874 VT Route 22A, in Panton, VT. A passerby had called in the fire. Upon the arrival of the first fire personnel, the home was found to be completely engulfed in flames. The home was completely destroyed and partially collapsed during firefighting efforts. Damages are estimated at approximately $150,000. The three occupants were injured in the fire. Harold Neel suffered minor burns. Susan Idle, who was living at the residence, suffered 2nd and 3rd. degree burns and was transported to the University of Vermont Medical Center. Muriel Neel perished in the fire.
The Fire Chief, Jim Burar, contacted the Vermont State Police and requested an origin and cause investigation of the fire. Detectives from the Vermont State Police Fire Investigation Unit along with Investigators from the Division of Fire Safety responded to the scene to conduct the investigation.
Investigators have determined that the fire cause is undetermined at this time and the circumstances not to be suspicious. The fire started at the rear of the residence on an exterior deck. A smoking area was located within this area. The fire spread quickly due to the high wind conditions.
The investigation is ongoing at this time. Anyone with any additional information is asked to call Det./Sgt. Thomas Williams at 802-773-9101 at the Rutland Barracks.
COURT ACTION: N/A
DET./SGT. Thomas Williams
Vermont State Police
Bureau of Criminal Investigations
Fire/Explosions Investigation Unit
Deputy State Fire Marshal
Rutland Field Station
124 State Place
Rutland, VT. 05701