COATESVILLE, Pennsylvania — Authorities say a mobile home fire that killed three relatives was accidentally sparked by smoking materials discarded outside during conditions ideal for the spread of fire.
Police in West Caln Township in Chester County said the noontime blaze Monday quickly engulfed the home, trapping the victims on a rear deck of the double-wide structure.
The blaze killed 58-year-old Rolanda Rimel; her 52-year-old sister, Sally Rimel; and Sally Rimel's 37-year-old daughter, Angel Rimel. Four other people, including two children, escaped.
An investigation by the fire marshal determined that fire started among trash and recycling bins and was sparked by "carelessly discarded smoking materials."
Officials say weather conditions — temperatures in the 80s, low humidity and gusty winds — were a significant factor in the spread of the fire.