Only two months into the year, 13 people have died in fatal fires in North Carolina. That's according to statistics from the State Fire Marshal's Office.
Seven of the 13 victims were from Eastern Carolina.
On January 5, 54-year-old Bennie Strickland died in a house fire in Tarboro.
Ten days later, two men were killed in a shed fire at Morehead City mobile home park. 63-year-old Michael Ray and 65-year-old Bucky Bryan died in the blaze on January 15. Police said electricity was illegally hooked up to the shed they were staying in.
A Wilson County man died in a fire at a home on February 10. Officials said George Allen died in the fire off of Columbia Avenue.
This morning, three more people in our area died in a fire outside of Jacksonville, and they were all children. Sheriff Ed Brown says 12-year-old Tabitha Pittman, 8-year-old Elijah Pittman, and 6-year-old Gabriel Pittman died in the fire at their home.
In 2011, at least 77 people lost their lives in fires in North Carolina. Two of those fatal fires claimed three lives. Last July, a mother and her six-month-old baby were killed in a house fire aboard Camp Lejeune. 22-year-old Tara Lampman and the infant, Lexi Lampman, died after the fire at a duplex in Midway Park.