A 58-year-old woman who was pulled from a smoke-filled room early yesterday in the Parkside Hotel in Northwest Washington died about an hour later of smoke inhalation, D.C. police and fire officials reported.
The victim, Doris J. Prather, had no fixed address and frequently stayed at the hotel, a shelter for the homeless at 1336 I St. NW, police said.
A spokesman for the D.C. Fire Department said that Herman Snyder, who was staying in a 10th-floor room at the hotel, called the resident manager about 3 a.m. and told him he smelled smoke in his room.
The manager went to the room and found smoke coming from the heating vent, the spokesman said. He said the manager, Snyder and the elevator operator checked the rooms below Snyder's and were unable to enter a room on the eighth floor because of thick smoke.
While the manager called the fire department, the spokesman said, Snyder wrapped wet towels around his face and went into the room, where he found Prather and carried her to the hallway. She was taken by fire department ambulance to George Washington University Hospital, where she died about an hour later, the spokesman said.
He said firefighters found a smoldering mattress in the room and a small fire in a closet. The cause of the fire is under investigation, he said.