Deadly House Fire in Newfane

August 24, 2012 Updated Aug 24, 2012 at 6:41 PM EDT

By Ed Reilly

...
August 24, 2012 Updated Aug 24, 2012 at 6:41 PM EDT

NEWFANE, NY (WKBW) - Thursday night, one person was killed in a house fire in Niagara County.

Kathleen Trotter, 57-years-old was the victim in the fire.

The blaze happened at 5306 McClelland Road in the Town of Newfane.

Several fire companies were called into battle the inferno, that was described as very intense by those who witnessed it.

Neighbors said flames were shooting 20-feet into the air, and thick black smoke was pouring from the home.

The Niagara County Sheriff's Office and the Niagara County Fire Investigation Unit now believe the fire was not suspicious in origin.

"It looks like it is nothing more than a tragic accident. Possibly she wasn't aware that there was a fire in another room in the house, and just got overcome by smoke," commented Niagara County Sheriff James Voutour.

Investigators believe the fire started in the kitchen area.

A group of neighbors tried to rescue the trapped woman, as did Niagara County Sheriff's Deputy Tracy Steen.

Deputy Steen was injured in her rescue attempt.

She was taken to the Erie County Medical Center in Buffalo and treated for smoke inhalation.

Sheriff Voutour said the injured police officer was released from the hospital Friday morning.

The victim in the fire, Kathleen Trotter, is described by neighbors as a quiet woman who lived alone and kept to herself.

Kathleen Trotter retired after working for several years at the Lockport office of the Department of Motor Vehicles.