Elmira/Corning Regional Airport
Woman Dead After Tioga Co. Fire
Written By: Tanja Rekhi
TIOGA COUNTY (WENY) -- Charred framing is all that remains of a Barton trailer after multiple fire crews battled a large blaze that left one woman dead Saturday evening.
The fire, investigators are calling accidental killed 37-year-old Valentene Mazella. Police say she was trapped inside her boyfriend's trailer and overcome by smoke. The fire was caused by an overheated pan on the stove in the kitchen.
"Mobile homes are mobile homes, they escalate quite fast," said Waverly-Barton District Fire Chief Don Howard. "When [flames] find a way out and it gets ventilated, then that'll escalate the fire even faster. There's a lot of things that can happen between the time the start of the fire and the time we get there."
Three agencies (Waverly, Sayre and Lockwood) battled the blaze. The flames were out in about twenty minutes.
"We are not exactly sure what was on the stove, what was cooking," said Chief Howard. "We're assuming it was probably grease or something in the pan and then it ignited and then from there things got out of control."
Chief Howard says they're fortunate it wasn't windy or else things could have been even worse; surrounding trailers could have sparked as well.
"Our hearts go out to the family, none of us like seeing any of this," said Chief Howard. "Our hearts go out the them. We did our best. Hopefully we don't have to worry about another one of these for a long time."