Fatal South Tulsa Fire Ruled Accidental

Monday, August 18th 2014, 2:53 pm
By: Dee Duren

Tulsa Fire investigators say the fatal fire in the 1500 block of East 59th Place South on Sunday afternoon has been ruled accidental.

They are still working to determine the specific cause and point of origin, however, Captain Stan May said in a news release.

The body of Randy Zimmer, 51, was found in the kitchen of the south Tulsa home.

"There was a propane tank on the back porch next to the house which vented after being exposed to the heat and flames, accelerating the spread of the fire," May said.

Witnesses say Zimmer had gone to the back of the house where the fire was burning and suddenly stopped talking to neighbors who were encouraging him to get out. His girlfriend, Rachel Baker, was able to escape the house fire.

8/17/2014 Related Story: Man Dies In South Tulsa House Fire

There was a smoke detector in the house but the battery had been removed, according to May.

TFD will be conducting an "After the Fire" smoke detector check at about 113 houses in the area near 61st and Peoria. Firefighters will replace batteries and install detectors if requested.