Investigators said Monday they could not determine what caused a fatal fire in Northborough on Friday but that they found no evidence to suggest the blaze was set intentionally.
Officials said the fire started in a bedroom on the first floor of the residential building, where Kevin Hunt, 40, was found dead.
“On behalf of the Northborough Fire Department, I’d like to express our deepest condolences to Mr. Hunt’s loved ones,” said the town’s fire chief, David Parenti.
Firefighters rushed to 129 Maple St. around 4:20 a.m. on Sept. 10, where they discovered smoke and flames pouring out of the two-story building, fire officials said. The damage left the building uninhabitable. The other residents escaped safely. One firefighter was taken to a hospital for heat exhaustion.
Fire officials said they could not identify a single cause of the fire but named improper disposal of smoking materials and an unspecified electrical malfunction as possibilities.
An examination of the building after the fire found there were no working smoke detectors in any of the five residential units, officials said.
“Smoke alarms can’t help you escape a fire if the batteries are missing or expired,” Parenti said. “If the alarm is beeping or chirping, don’t just remove the batteries. It’s a sign that the batteries or the device itself needs to be replaced. The State Fire Code requires replacement smoke alarms in older one- and two-family homes to be photoelectric and have 10-year, sealed, non-replaceable, non-rechargeable batteries and a hush feature. This is to make it easier for people to maintain these important safety tools.”
Katie Redefer can be reached at email@example.com.