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Woman killed in Des Plaines house fire

(MCT) — A woman was killed this morning in an early morning house fire in west suburban Des Plaines, authorities said.

Responding to reports of one or two people trapped in a burning home, Des Plaines firefighters managed to quickly locate the unresponsive woman inside the fully engulfed split-level home in the 1000 block of Irwin Avenue, but weren't able to revive her despite arriving within five minutes of the midnight fire call, officials said.

The victim was found in a lower level of the home and was dead at the scene, according to Des Plaines Fire Chief Alan Wax.

The Cook County medical examiner's office confirmed that a woman in her 40s or 50s was killed in the fire, but withheld her identity.

An adult man who managed to escape the burning home and a Des Plaines police officer who ran inside to alert the residents, were both examined by fire officials for smoke inhalation, but weren't injured, Wax said.

Only the two victims were inside the home at the time of the fire, according to the fire chief.

The death came despite a strong effort by Des Plaines firefighters in combating the quick-moving blaze, extinguishing the blaze in less than a half hour, Wax said.

The fire brought firefighters and equipment from several nearby towns, he added.

The blaze is directly north of the Addams Memorial Tollway and O'Hare International Airport.

Des Plaines fire investigators and the state Fire Marshal's office were working to determine the cause or origin of the house fire, which remained unknown this morning, Wax said.

The fire charged in the home's interior, but Wax didn't call the home a total loss.

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