FROSTBURG, Md. (WJZ) — Officials are investigating after a Frostburg woman was killed in an apartment fire Tuesday afternoon.

“This tragic incident during Fire Prevention Week is a heartbreaking but real example of why you should never disconnect or remove batteries from smoke alarms. Get out, stay out. Have working smoke alarms and an escape plan in place,” stated State Fire Marshal Brian S. Geraci

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Crews responded to the 300 block of Braddock Street just before 2:30 p.m. On the scene, occupants reported that a woman may still be inside a second-floor apartment. Firefighters entered the unit and contained the fire. There, they found the victim.

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Preliminary investigation revealed the fire started in the living room but the cause remains under investigation. The victim is believed to be the 54-year-old resident, but an official ID will be made pending an autopsy.

Officials believe the woman woke up and attempted to escape before succumbing to smoke inhalation. Investigators said smoke alarms were present but were disconnected and the batteries were removed.

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CBS Baltimore Staff