8-year-old girl dies in OP duplex fire - KCTV5

8-year-old girl dies in OP duplex fire

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OVERLAND PARK, KS (KCTV) -

Police have identified the girl who died after being pulled from a duplex fire late Saturday night.

Police said 8-year-old Taylor Jackson, of Overland Park, did not live at the home where the fire occurred, but was there for a sleepover.

The cause of the fire remained under investigation Monday.

According to fire investigators, the smoke alarm in the residence had been disabled a week before the fire. The resident was in the process of replacing the alarm but had not yet completed the replacement when this tragedy occurred.

Firefighters were dispatched just before 11 p.m. Saturday night to a house fire in the 10200 Block of West 86th Terrace. First responders reported smoke visible from a two-story duplex.

Rescuers began a search of the residence and located Taylor in a second-story bedroom and carried her from the duplex. She was rushed to an area hospital where she later died.

The fire was quickly knocked out and damage to the structure was minimal.

Firefighters said an adult and another young girl, who was treated for minor smoke inhalation at the scene, escaped the residence on their own.

Losing a child is difficult, Jason Rhodes, spokesman for the Overland Park Fire Department, said Monday.

"That's just as bad as it gets right there," he said.

Taylor was a third-grader at Apache Elementary School in the Shawnee Mission School District. School was not in session Monday, but counselors will be on hand when children show up for classes Tuesday.

Rhodes said the heartbreak that a working smoke detector could have saved the girl's life has firefighters going door to door to make sure residents know the importance of having working detectors.

"Don't wait," Rhodes said. "As soon as you see this piece on the news, check your battery, make sure it beeps, push the button and make sure the thing works."

Rhodes said call your local fire department if you have any questions including about where to place smoke detectors.

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