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Fatal House Fire Determined To Be Accidental

While the fire has been determined to be accidental, the exact cause of the blaze has not yet been released.

A house fire that took the life of an elderly resident and injured another in Benicia on Thursday morning has been determined to be accidental in nature, according to police and fire officials.

Benicia police Lt. Frank Hartig said one of two elderly people injured in the one-alarm fire died at 7:15 a.m. on Thursday at St. Francis Memorial Hospital's Bothin Burn Center in San Francisco.

Benicia Fire Chief Jim Lydon said the blaze was reported at 2:06 a.m. by a newspaper delivery person who smelled smoke and saw that it was coming from a house in the 300 block of Larkin Drive. Crews arrived to find light smoke showing around the home and forced entry into the residence.

"Once inside, we conducted a search and we located two victims down in the back bedroom," Lydon said. A man and a woman in their 80s, were removed from the home and treated at the scene, then taken to Kaiser Permanente Vallejo Medical Center before being transferred to St. Francis Memorial Hospital, according to Lydon.

The residents' dog was treated for smoke inhalation at the scene and taken to a veterinary hospital, Lydon said.

The fire caused extensive damage to the living room and kitchen areas, and there was heat and smoke damage throughout the home, Lydon said. According to Lydon, the home had smoke detectors but it is not clear if they were operational.

While the fire has been determined to be accidental, the exact cause of the blaze has not yet been released. Neither the gender nor the identity of the deceased victim has been released.

The medical condition of the surviving victim has also not yet been released, according to Hartig.

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