1 dead, 1 injured in Norwalk house fire

An intense fire destroyed a home in Norwalk today, apparently claiming one person's life and leaving another hospitalized with smoke inhalation, the Los Angeles County Fire Department reported.

The blaze inside a two-story home at 10802 Van Ruiten St. was reported at 3:07 a.m., said Dispatch Supervisor Ray Dong and fire department Inspector Randall Wright. A knockdown was declared at 4:13 a.m.

The fire was so intense that it caused the roof of the home to collapse, Wright said.

One person known to have been inside the house at the time of the fire was "unaccounted for'' after the blaze, Wright said.

Dong described the missing person as deceased. Wright said the status of the missing person remains unconfirmed because firefighters have not been able to get inside the house due to the roof collapse.

A second person was transported to a hospital for treatment of smoke inhalation, according to Dong and Wright. That person's condition was not immediately known. The victim's ages and genders were not immediately reported.

Firefighting efforts were hampered because of several explosions inside the home caused by oxygen cylinders ignited by the flames, Wright said. No firefighters were injured, he said.

The cause of the fire remained under investigation, he added.

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