The Latest: Human Services doesn’t check for smoke detectors

ERIE, Pa. (AP) — The Latest on a home day care center fire in Pennsylvania that killed five children (all times local):

5:50 p.m.

A spokeswoman for Pennsylvania’s Department of Human Services says it does not regulate smoke detectors in state-licensed home day care facilities.

Ali Fogarty said Tuesday that current regulations do not allow for citing a child care facility for compliance with fire safety codes including having working smoke detectors.

A blaze ripped through a home day care center Sunday morning in Erie, killing five children. The youngest was 8 months old.

Erie’s fire chief said there were not enough working smoke detectors at the Harris Family Daycare.

State Sen. Daniel Laughlin said he plans to introduce a bill that would require the Department to include inspection of all smoke detectors in their annual inspection of child day care facilities.

Fogarty said the department is committed to amending its existing regulations.


3:30 p.m.

A fire chief says there weren’t enough working smoke detectors at a Pennsylvania home day care center where a fire killed five children.

Fire Chief Guy Santone told a Tuesday news conference that state officials who inspect home day care centers do not check for smoke detectors. City authorities and state legislators are working on legislation that would make home day care centers register with the city, so it can deploy inspectors.

A message seeking comment was left with the Department of Human Services.

Santone said fire officials suspect the blaze that broke out Sunday morning at Harris Family Daycare was accidental.

An adult and two adolescent boys were able to escape the fire. Five children ranging in age from 8 months to 7 years died.

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