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911 tape from fatal fire is released

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SPANISH FORK — A 911 call from what ended up being a deadly house fire in Spanish Fork shows the caller apparently didn't know somebody was inside the home.

Austin Peterson, 2, died in the fire at his great-grandmother's home on Canyon Road Tuesday morning.

A woman had driven by, seen the fire, returned to the home and called 911. She told an emergency dispatcher, "I am at this intersection and this house is on fire. There are just flames coming straight out of the front window and the side of it."

The dispatcher said, "You don't know if there is anyone inside the building?"

"I don't see any cars in their driveway," the caller answered.

Then the caller spotted the homeowner.

"There's an old woman out front. I see her," she said.

At that point, the caller tried to get Betty Hone, 87, away from the house.

"This woman says she needs my help," the caller said. She is heard saying, "Come away from the house, come away from the house."

The dispatcher asked, "How close is she to the home?"

The caller continued to tell Hone, "Come over to me. Come by the road."

In the heart-wrenching set of circumstances, crews learned that Hone's great-grandson was sleeping in a back room. The fire burned so hot and was so intense that he could not be rescued. The main floor in the home collapsed into the basement. Hone was treated for smoke inhalation then released from a hospital.

Fire investigators say an overloaded power strip in the basement started the fire.

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Andrew Adams


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