By Karen Hutchinson-Talaski

Staff writer

HERMISTON — The fire that killed two Hermiston women last week has been determined to be accidental.

Hermiston Fire District Fire Marshall Tom Bohm said on Monday the fire most likely started in the living room of the manufactured home at 935 Stockton Avenue on Feb. 6. The likely cause was an electrical short in an extension cord.

The fire claimed the lives of 85-year-old Lydia Pedersen and her daughter, Aloma, 45. The home was gutted and sustained extensive smoke damage.

"This is a good time to remind people — don't use extension cords as permanent wiring," Bohm said.

Working smoke detectors are key, too, says the fire marshall. A smoke detector had once been in the hallway between the bedrooms where the victims were found but had been removed. There was a smoke detector in the master bedroom at the south end of the building; however, no one was in that room at the time of the fire.

Bohm recommends a smoke detector in the hallway of any home, as well as one in each bedroom.

Karen Hutchinson-Talaski can be reached at

Recommended for you

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.