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One dead in Nikolaevsk fire, troopers say

Casey Grove
A medical examiner is working to positively identify the person firefighters found in the remains of a house fire early Thursday in the Kenai Peninsula village of Nikolaevsk. Photo courtesy AST

Firefighters found a body early Thursday in the smoldering remains of a house fire in the Kenai Peninsula village of Nikolaevsk, according to Alaska State Troopers.

Soldotna dispatchers received multiple reports of the single-story, ranch-style home burning about 3:30 a.m., and firefighters had the flames under control about an hour later, troopers spokeswoman Megan Peters said. They found a body inside, which was sent for an autopsy -- to determine the person's identity -- in Anchorage.

“We have nothing to suggest that anyone else was in the home,” Peters said, when asked if anyone had to escape or suffered injuries.

Volunteers from Kachemak Emergency Services and Anchor Point rushed to the house, on Nikolaevsk Road off the Sterling Highway 20 miles north of Homer, troopers said.

“By the time responders got there, it was fully involved and the roof had collapsed, so it had burned pretty completely,” Peters said.

About an hour later, the fire was under control. Then firefighters discovered the body, Peters said.

“We do believe we know who the individual is, but because the remains are so badly damaged, we need to wait for the state medical examiner to be sure,” Peters said. “We’ve talked to the family of the person we think it is, so we’ve done a tentative I.D.”

A trooper talked to Nikolaevsk residents about the fire, and a deputy state fire marshal and troopers are investigating, Peters said. They would also rely on results from the autopsy, she said.

Contact Casey Grove at casey(at)alaskadispatch.com. Follow him on Twitter @kcgrove