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A woman was found dead in an upstairs bedroom of this home at 83 Bowman St., Manchester fire officials said. (/Union Leader)

UPDATED: Woman found dead after Manchester house fire

MANCHESTER  — A woman died Tuesday in a fire in which firefighters had to struggle through about 4 feet of debris to battle the blaze, Fire Chief James Burkush said.


Burkush said neighbors identified the woman as Sarah Robinson; she is believed to be in her early 70s. Robinson, who lived alone in the house, was found dead in an upstairs bedroom of her home at 83 Bowman St., Burkush said.


The fire, reported about 5 p.m., was caused by an overloaded extension cord, District Fire Chief Mark Pelletier said. The blaze was contained about 45 minutes later. Pelletier said it was a tough fight because of the amount of material piled throughout the house that fed the fire.


“Because of the contents on the second floor, there was a heavy fire. It had a head start,” Pelletier said.


Firefighters also had a difficult time getting inside to perform a search, Burkush said.


“The fire crews got here and couldn’t get through the front door,” Burkush said. The debris “certainly hampered our ability to get in and fight the fire.”


 Burkush said the house also had no working smoke detectors.


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