MURRAY — Calloway County Coroner Ricky Garland said one person died in a fire early Wednesday morning that destroyed a unit of the Riviera Courts Mobile Home Community on Murray’s north side.
Garland identified the victim as Lanie Gray, 19, of Murray. She was the person City of Murray Fire Chief Eric Pologruto said firefighters pulled from the burning mobile home shortly after arriving on the scene at about 4:30 a.m.
An autopsy examination was performed Wednesday at the Kentucky State Medical Examiner’s Office in Madisonville. Garland said results are pending.
Pologruto said firefighters were on the scene within two minutes of receiving the call of a structure fire in progress that also reported a person being trapped inside the building.
“When we got on scene, though, most of the mobile home was involved in fire,” Pologruto sad. “Our crews went to work quickly, too, once they arrived. We had one firefighter that began using a hose to put water on the fire from the outside while two other firefighters entered the home to look for anyone inside.
“Within a short time, they were able to locate an individual and moved that person outside where (Murray-Calloway County Ambulance Service personnel) were waiting and took over that person’s care. However, it was quickly determined that the person was deceased from the injuries they had received.”
Pologruto also said one other person was able to escape the building but did sustain what he said were minor injuries. He said the identity of that person has not been publicly released.
Pologruto said firefighters needed only four to five minutes to bring the blaze under control and he said he believed they performed very well at the scene. However, he said if flames are present before units arrive, it becomes an uphill battle.
“That’s especially true with a mobile home,” he said. “I mean, it took us only two minutes, probably less, to get to the scene once we got the call, but unfortunately, with mobile home fires, once one catches fire, it can burn extremely fast.
“This is true of Riviera or any mobile home park we have in the city, and no matter how well we respond, we’re going to be kind of playing catch-up if it’s burning before we get there.”
Pologruto said the investigation into the fire is being led by City of Murray Fire Marshal Greg Molinar, and preliminary findings Wednesday resulted in the cause being undetermined. The investigation will continue, the chief said.
MFD is being joined by the Murray Police Department in the investigation of the fire. MPD Public Information Officer Sgt. Brant Shutt said this is not unusual as police will usually be involved in a death investigation of any type, whether the cause was accidental or criminal. He said MPD’s role is strictly on an assist basis at this time and that MFD and the coroner’s office are still the lead agencies.
“Our prayers go out to this person’s family and friends at this time. They’re going to need that in the coming days, I feel,” Pologruto said.