Fatal New Albany fire 4

A fire broke out at 1318 Ridgeway Friday morning.

NEW ALBANY — An elderly woman who died in an early Friday morning fire in New Albany has been identified.

Newsgathering partner WAVE 3 News is reporting that Sarah Smith died in the blaze at 1318 Ridgeway Avenue.

New Albany Fire Chief Matt Juliot said the call came in at 7:03 Friday morning and by the time crews arrived at 7:07 a.m., the house in Silver Hills was fully engulfed in flames. Crews did an initial search of the home and found no one inside, but on a secondary search they found an elderly woman, later identified by WAVE as Smith, in her vehicle, which was still parked in the attached garage. She was pronounced dead at the scene.

It took firefighters an hour to get the fire under control. Five fire companies responded to the scene.

Juliot said fire was heaviest in the rear of the house and on the side where the garage was located. The Indiana State Fire Marshal, New Albany Police Department and New Albany Fire Department are investigating the fire.

Two neighbors apparently tried to kick in the front door before firefighters arrived, but the fire was too intense. One nearby resident said she heard a popping sound before seeing the flames.

Smith was believed to have lived alone in the home.

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