Investigators: Cigarette smoking caused fire that killed 2 in Larimer County

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LARIMER COUNTY, Colo. — Cigarette smoking caused a fire in a trailer home that killed both people who lived there.

That’s according to the results of a joint investigation by Loveland Fire Rescue Authority and Larimer County Sheriff’s Office.

Hazel Piper, 70, and her son Harvard Preston Thomas, 50, died when their mobile home caught fire just after midnight Thursday. The home is a 1212 Butte Rd., just west of Loveland in Larimer County.

The Larimer County coroner says both victims died from smoke inhalation. Thomas also had burn injuries that contributed to his death.

The fire also killed three animals in the home.

Investigators say it had a smoke detector but it was not working because the battery was disconnected.

“The incident underscores the need for all residents to have working smoke and carbon monoxide detectors in their homes,” a press release says.

The Loveland Fire Rescue Authority’s Community Safety Division offers free inspections and tests for any alarm system, and will provide detectors to residents who need them. Call 962-2537 for information.


  • Robert Gift

    Sorry for Hazel and Harvard and especially their pets.
    Smoke alarms are so cheap and so effective. I am not perfect and, with my absentmindedness, know that I could accidentally cause a fire. So I also mounted a smoke alarm above my workbench. If I smoked, I know I could fall asleep with a lit cigarette, so I’d have a smoke alarm above.
    Carbon monoxide alarms are only about $19 at Home Depot and Lowe’s.

  • Mary Don'twanna

    Wrong several deaths including a child in a closet testing positive for THC and over 1,000 marijuana intoxicated driving arrests, in Colorado. If you are going to post, try posting the truth.

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