Most Viewed Stories
Kerosene lamp may have caused deadly Browns Valley fire
Fire investigators are trying to determine what caused a tragic blaze Tuesday morning in rural Yuba County that claimed a woman's life.
Joann McClanahan, 66, died in the back bedroom of her home, the Yuba County Coroner's Office said.
Arson has been ruled out.
"There was a kerosene lamp in the bedroom and they're looking into that as a possible (cause)," Sgt. Greig Sizelove said.
The fire was reported at about 8:40 a.m. at the three-bedroom, single-family double-wide trailer home in the 5000 block of Shadowbrook Trail in Browns Valley.
Flames sparked while McClanahan was inside with her two adult sons, CalFire Battalion Chief Dave Stonum said.
One son tried to rescue his mother from the back bedroom where the fire started, but smoke and flames were already too heavy and prevented him from getting to her, officials said.
The other son was transported to Rideout Memorial Hospital for "an unrelated medical condition," Stonum said.
Family members at the scene declined to comment.
Damage was estimated at $170,000 with the home described as a "total loss."
The light green home had a wooden front deck and a pony pasture outside.
"My dad heard a big 'boom' and I went outside and saw a big column of black smoke," said neighbor Stan Roman. "It was a like you see in the movies."
Fourteen firefighters responded from CalFire Nevada City, Loma Rica-Browns Valley, Marysville and Butte County. Mop-up efforts continued well into the afternoon.
Officials from the American Red Cross and Yuba County's Trauma Intervention Program were called to assist the family with living accommodations.
CONTACT Rob Parsons at email@example.com or 749-4785. Find him on Facebook at /ADcrimebeat or on Twitter at @ADcrimebeat.