Mother, 3 Kids Killed as Fire Rips Through Kensington Home

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A mother and her three children died when a fire ripped through their home in Philadelphia's Kensington neighborhood Saturday morning, authorities said.

Firefighters were dispatched to the 3300 block of Kip Street shortly before 8 a.m. and arrived to find flames and smoke billowing from the first and second floors of the house, Fire Commissioner Adam Thiel said.

A 35-year-old mother died on the first floor while her children, two boys aged 9 and 17 and a girl aged 11, died on the second floor, Philadelphia Police Department spokesman Miguel Torres said.

Thiel said firefighters had received reports of people trapped inside and made an "aggressive interior attack" on the blaze before finding four bodies.

“The worst thing for any firefighter is not being able to save a life. There was a level of fire spread, it happened very fast, apparently," he said.

The fire reached two alarms in the densely packed block, with some 60 firefighters, medics and "support personnel," responding, he said.

It wasn’t immediately clear what caused the fire, but it left the front of the house black from soot and smoke. The adjacent houses did not appear to be heavily damaged.

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