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Neighbors of person killed in O’Fallon house fire say hydrants were not functioning

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O’FALLON, MO – A fire tore through an O'Fallon, Missouri home, killing one woman and sending her husband and grandson to the hospital.

Neighbors said passersby saw heavy smoke coming from the house, at 92 Country Life Drive, and called 911 around 1 am Monday.  According to the neighbors, the strangers began knocking on windows to alert the family inside.  First responders joined them.

"They were running around the house with their batons and yelling if anyone was in there," said Stephen Kiger II.

"The young man came out the door, in his briefs, gasping for air, saying his grandma was still in there and the smoke was too thick," he added.

Fire officials said they knocked out the fire relatively quickly but they found a woman, they estimated to be in her 70's, dead inside.

Neighbors have their own safety fears after they watched firefighters try unsuccessfully to get water to flow from two nearby fire hydrants.

"I was informed last night by a fire fighter that the hydrant right in front of my house and the one half a block up, they could not get a drop of water," Kiger said.

Fox2/News11 reached out to the fire department and the city. Fire officials confirm that the water pressure in the area was low but it did not hamper their efforts to put out the fire. The city said the fire hydrants in question were tested earlier in the year and were functioning properly.