Authorities say a fire that killed five children and their mother at a Michigan motel appears to have been an accident.
The Berrien County sheriff’s office says experts found no evidence of an accelerant that would have started the deadly blaze early Saturday at the Cosmo Extended Stay Motel in Sodus (SO’-dis) Township. The precise cause still is under investigation.
The fire began in a first-floor room of the two-story motel, about 100 miles (160 kilometers) from Chicago. Twenty-six-year-old Kiarre Curtis and five of her children died in a room on the second floor, likely from smoke inhalation. Autopsies are planned Sunday.
Curtis’ husband and a 1-year-old child survived.
The sheriff’s office says investigators are also examining the motel’s fire alarms and smoke detectors.