UPDATE: The two victims hospitalized from the home fire have been identified.
According to the Dubuque Police Department, 32-year-old Randy A. Grutz and 21-year-old Meagan R. Arthofer were injured in the fire on Loras Blvd.
We do not know the current status of their conditions. However, the fire department has previously described their injuries as life-threatening.
We will update when more information becomes available.
DUBUQUE, Iowa (KWWL) – Investigators are still working to determine what caused a fire at a Dubuque home Tuesday night.
The fire began just after 9 o’clock at a home near Loras College. Officials said that two victims were taken to the hospital with serious injuries.
According to a press release, crews put out the flames within 15 minutes. A smaller, second fire, happened early Wednesday morning.
The home is located feet away from the Loras College campus. Many college students, like Richard Hunter, were shocked after witnessing the incident.
“We just look up the street and we see smoke piling out of this house,” said Hunter. “Obviously, it’s a fire, but we didn’t know how it happened.”
Many students, like Asia Singleton, were concerned for their friend’s safety. Many homes along Loras Blvd. are occupied by college students.
“Most of us were just really concerned because Loras does have off campus housing,” said Singleton. “And my first reaction was like, ‘Wait, I have friends that live in off-campus housing. Was it their house? What’s going on?'”
We do not know the identities of the burned victims or their current conditions. And we are still unaware as to what caused the fie in the first place.
However, Dubuque Fire Rescue Marshall, Mark Burkle, said that the owner of the home was using it as an unofficial halfway house.
Burkle said that not everyone staying in the home had signed a lease. And, the high occupancy was not up to fire code.
“So it made it a little more complicated to investigate because we weren’t familiar with the people who were living there,” said Burkle.
According to Iowa Law, noncompliance with fire code could result in multiple penalties. We are still working to determine what consequences that landlord may face.