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Townhouse Fire Kills Lorton Woman

Debra Chiles, 49, died as a result of carbon monoxide poisoning caused by a fire in a single-family townhouse at 9207 Cardinal Forest Lane in the Lorton area of Fairfax County at approximately 1 a.m. Wednesday, May 23, according to Daniel Schmidt, public information officer, Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department.

An adult male who jumped to safety from a third floor window of the burning home prior to the arrival of firefighters was transported to Inova Fairfax Hospital. A second male was transported to Inova Mount Vernon Hospital. Neither suffered life threatening injuries according to Fire Department personnel.

Upon arriving at the scene, firefighters found heavy smoke coming from the second floor and flames coming from the first floor of the three-story townhouse. The incident commander called for a second alarm, which brought 60 firefighters to the scene, according to the department.

Bringing the blaze under control in approximately 25 minutes, firefighters discovered the deceased adult female in a third floor bedroom. Two family dogs also perished in the fire, the report stated.

Additionally, two firefighters were also transported to Inova Fairfax for non-life threatening injuries. The family has been displaced and is being assisted by the Red Cross.

According to fire investigators, the fire was caused by a microwave in the kitchen. Damage has been estimated at $375,000.

—Chuck Hagee