VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) — Virginia Beach firefighters are investigating a fire Friday morning near Town Center that’s left one person dead.
The fire broke out around 7 a.m. in a fifth wheel camper at Cleveland St and Dorset Avenue, on the lot next to Whitehurst Auto Tech.
Barb Morrison with the Virginia Beach Fire Department says there was heavy fire coming from the camper when they arrived. Two men were inside at the time and one was able to get out. The man, who escaped, was unharmed.
A man, who wishes to stay anonymous, told 10 On Your Side he saw smoke from the camper on his way to work.
“I pulled up and said, “Is everybody okay? You alright?” He said, ‘No, somebody is inside,” he said.
He asked a man, who identified himself as Rick, if he had called 911. Rick told him he had left his phone inside the camper. He handed Rick his phone and ran towards to trailer.
“I ran. I am hollering and yelling for someone to respond back,” he said. “It was pretty intense. It was pitch black. I couldn’t see absolutely anything. I couldn’t even see my hand in front of me. The heat was extreme.”
He said he tried to make his way through the thick smoke but couldn’t locate the man.
The entranceway is completely burnt off and there isn’t much left inside the camper. Melanie Allison says she once called the trailer home. She says the camper’s owner allowed her to stay with him when she fell on hard times.
“I can’t believe that I stayed in this camper. This is the same camper,” she said. “I lost my trailer when they sold it. I had nowhere to go with my dog. He took me. He gave me a place to stay and was my friend.”
Virginia Beach Fire Department said the fire remains under investigation.