Home wiring, fire services delay lead to Yukon woman's death

Fire investigators and the coroner's office have wrapped up an investigation into a fire that destroyed a home and killed a woman in April.

Donna Tull, 69, died in house fire in April

Fire investigators and the Yukon Coroner’s office have wrapped up an investigation into a fire in April. The fire destroyed a home and left a woman dead.

Donna Tull, who lived in a house on the Old Alaska Highway near Whitehorse, died in the April 22 fire. (CBC)

Donna Tull, 69, lived alone in the home, located on the Old Alaska Highway near Whitehorse. She had trouble breathing and had to use a walker to get around her home. Her mobility issues were so severe that investigators believe she was not able to escape from the burning house.

Evidence shows the fire started in heat trace wiring intended to protect water pipes from freezing. Evidence also shows there was an unnecessary five-minute delay in the fire department’s response because a private alarm company contacted the wrong fire department. 

The Coroner’s office is recommending that Lifeline Systems conduct a review to identify the closest and most appropriate emergency services for its clients in rural Yukon.