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Fire Survivor: Woman Went Back for a Coat and Perished

BILLINGS, Mo. -- An Ozarks woman dies in a house fire this morning. The fire was reported about 5am just off Highway 60 between Republic and Billings.
The house was fully involved and it was spreading fast
BILLINGS, Mo. -- An Ozarks woman dies in a house fire this morning.  The fire was reported about 5am just off Highway 60 between Republic and Billings. 

KOLR10's Brett Martin has been covering the fire all morning and has this update at midday.

Billings fire chief Henry Bos tells KOLR10 News this fire is in the 2400 block of U.S. Highway 60 east of Billings and west of Republic.
Bos says a man who lived in the home told fire officials the fire started behind the refrigerator. The man told investigators a woman who lives there went to get a coat and became lost in the fire.

Fire crews were still at the scene at 11 a.m., going on six hours in sub-freezing temperatures. "The first of our guys were on the scene about 5 a.m.  The house was fully involved and it was spreading fast," Bos says.

Bos says the house is surrounded by a junk yard debris caused obstacles for fire crews   He says due to the condition of the home and the rummage around it, it has caused problems for his men.

"This house has a lot of debris around it, there are a bunch of tree limbs down. It's been a fight to stand up.  There's a ditch behind it and with it being 7 degrees and water, we're creating our own ice field.  The guys are working hard with the circumstances we're dealing with," he says. 

Bos says the state fire marshal's office is working to learn the cause of the fire.  The victim has not yet been identified, pending notification of relatives.

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