Woman dies after Aspen Hill house fire

Firefighters look on as they battle the early-morning blaze. (Photo: WJLA)

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One of the victims in Thursday morning's house fire in Aspen Hill has died due to her injuries, authorities say.

Sandra Vidas died at an area hospital hours after the fire broke out on the first floor of an Iris Street home. Jim Vidas remains in serious condition with what officials call non-life threatening injuries.

The Vidases, along with two firefighters, were hospitalized early Thursday morning as a result of the fire, which broke out in the 4700 block of Iris Street at about 4 a.m.

Jim Vidas screamed for neighbors to help and several grabbed garden hoses and tried putting out the flames, neighbors say.

Firefighters say they discovered Jim Vidas in the front yard of the home, but did not find his 67-year-old wife Sandra until entering the home. She was found unconscious and unresponsive in a first-floor bedroom.

Investigators say the fire started in the basement, likely sparked by things that were kept too close to the furnace or water heater. At one point, firefighters had to be evacuated from the home due to fears that a floor could collapse.

Firefighters had a difficult time gaining access to the house. One investigator said the house posed a “classic hoarding situation” and firefighter could barely make their way inside.

She leaves behind a grown son and daughter. The Federal Trade Commission confirms she was a lawyer for the FTC. Neighbors say she'd recently retired.

The firefighters sustained only minor injuries and are expected to be treated and released Thursday.

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