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Firefighters find body in Monday camper trailer fire

May 5, 2020 By Katie Roenigk, Staff Writer

A male subject was found dead Monday afternoon in a camper that had been involved in a fire south of Riverton.

His name and age were not available Tuesday, pending notification of next-of-kin, officials said.

No other injuries were recorded in the blaze, which was reported at about 12:30 p.m. Monday from Red Crow Street.

Riverton Volunteer Fire Department chief Henri DeClercq said the initial report contained limited information, but when crews arrived in the area they found two camper trailers and three recreational vehicles "heavily involved in fire" at a property along Little Shield Road.

The trailers and vehicles "were all parked ... basically on top of each other," DeClerq said.

Black smoke billowed high above the scene and was visible for miles.

No structures were threatened by the flames, DeClercq said, noting that there was not a house on the property.

Instead, he said, it appeared someone - likely the deceased male - had been living in "at least one" of the campers.

"We just didn't know whether he was home or away," DeClercq said.

Firefighters began extinguishing the blaze with water while a local power company disconnected the electric lines that had fallen to the ground after melting in the fire, DeClercq said.

Once the power was "isolated" and the fire was out, he said firefighters entered the campers to extinguish any remaining "hot spots."

That's when they found the deceased male, DeClercq said.

Fremont County Coroner's officials said the man will not be autopsied, and his cause of death will be determined after toxicology testing is complete.

All the campers were destroyed in the incident, DeClercq said.

He said 16 firefighters in four trucks responded to the blaze for about five hours.

Traffic was rerouted around the fire scene for several hours.

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2020-05-28