Investigators seek cause behind Norwalk house fire that killed 7-year-old girl

NORWALK — Investigators are still working to determine what caused a deadly house fire that killed a 7-year-old girl and injured her parents this weekend.

City officials have not yet released the preliminary findings of their investigation into the fire, but have pledged to update the public when the probe is complete.

“We will release a fire safety statement in the near future, as we do after all fire incidents,” Edward McCabe, the assistant chief of the Norwalk Fire Department, said in an email.

Summer Fawcett, the daughter of the home owners, died after firefighters pulled her from the burning home.

The destructive fire broke out shortly before 5 a.m. Saturday at a single-family home on Nelson Avenue. Firefighters arrived to find the wood-frame home engulfed in flames, cars burning in the driveway and charred power lines in the street, according to officials.

Firefighters used a ladder to pull the child from a second-floor bedroom. EMTs then rushed her to Norwalk Hospital, where she was pronounced dead.

The state’s chief medical examiner said Monday Fawcett died of complications from thermal injuries and smoke inhalation. Her death was ruled an accident.

Norwalk Fire Marshal Broderick Sawyer has said inspectors are working to learn what sparked the deadly fire and are trying to determine if the blaze began inside or outside of the two-story structure.

A spokesperson for Eversource, the energy company that owns the power lines along Nelson Avenue, said Tuesday that the utility disconnected power to the home after emergency crews responded to the scene. The spokesperson said the company is prepared to assist with the fire marshal’s ongoing probe.

Summer’s parent’s, Blair and Lindsay Fawcett, were both hospitalized after the fire. A hospital spokesperson said Monday that Blair was still recovering, but that Lindsay had been discharged. The couple’s 9-year-old son is being cared for by family members.

One firefighter suffered burns during the response and was treated on the scene, officials said on the day of the fire.

At a Norwalk Fire Commission meeting on Tuesday, McCabe identified the injured firefighter as Capt. Jonathan Maggio, a veteran department official with more than three decades of experience.

McCabe said Maggio sustained second-degree burns to his chin and neck during the rescue effort. He said Maggio is currently feeling fine but will remain on leave to allow the injuries to heal.

“There's really nothing he can do but wait for those to heal up,” McCabe said.

The tragedy has led to an outpouring of support for the Fawcett family. A GoFundMe organized to help the family pay medical bills, funeral expenses and the costs of replacing their home has raised nearly $130,000 as of Tuesday.