A woman was killed and her daughter injured in a Friday morning blaze at their North Patchogue home, even before the first of five fire departments arrived, authorities said.
Police identified the victims as Elisa Doughty, 65, and, Kristle Doughty, 34, both residents of the Ohls Street house. Fire officials said three other adults in the house got out safely, but two dogs were found dead in a basement bedroom.
Heavy smoke was streaming from the back of the one-story ranch when the first of about 50 firefighters got on scene, said North Patchogue Fire Chief Thomas Wassmer. Authorities had been alerted by a 911 call at 9:45 a.m.
"You could hear the family members screaming in the back," the fire chief said. "It was just blood-curdling screams."
His second assistant chief found the older Doughty dead in a kitchenette/living room area about 15 feet from the outside door, Wassmer said. She was pronounced dead at the scene, he said.
Before firefighters arrived, the daughter had been trying to put out the fire with a garden hose from the outside, and then she tried to go down the inside stairs to the basement, the chief said. That's when she got burned on her arms, back and shoulder, he said.
"The stairwell becomes like a chimney and all the heat shoots up there," the chief said. "When she turned around, that's when I'm figuring she got the burns, when the fire started picking up a little bit and forced her back up the stairs."
The first assistant chief pulled her out of the first floor, Wassmer said.
The daughter was taken to Stony Brook University Hospital via North Patchogue Fire Department Ambulance.
The flames were under control within 20 minutes, Wassmer said, with the help of about 50 firefighters, including those from Blue Point, Hagerman, Patchogue and Medford. Medford and Patchogue ambulance crews were also at the scene.
Police Homicide Squad and Arson Section detectives are investigating the fire, but police said detectives believe it to be "noncriminal."
With John Valenti and Joan Gralla