Two occupants and two animals were found dead inside a house in the 9600 block of Knolltop Road in unincorporated Union after a fire broke out early Tuesday morning. | Photo: MFRD

Two adults and two animals were killed after a fire heavily damaged a house in unincorporated McHenry County near Union early Tuesday morning.

The Marengo Fire & Rescue Districts and Union Fire Protection District responded around 4:07 a.m. Tuesday to the 9600 block of Knolltop Road in unincorporated Union for a report of a structure fire.

Marengo Fire & Rescue Districts Communication Specialist Alex Vucha said the fire was initially reported by a passerby who saw flames coming from the front of the residence.

The McHenry County Sheriff’s Office said their deputies arrived to find the home engulfed in flames and the deputies were unable to make entry to the residence due to the amount of fire.

Two occupants and two animals were found dead inside a house in the 9600 block of Knolltop Road in unincorporated Union after a fire broke out early Tuesday morning. | Photo: MFRD

Firefighters arrived on the scene in 11 minutes and confirmed heavy flames showing from the northwest corner of the one-story home.

A request for additional manpower and resources was made through the Mutual Aid Box Alarm System (MABAS) due to the rapidly spreading fire, Vucha said.

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Nearly 15 neighboring fire departments responded to the aid request.

Vucha said the fire was declared under control within 25 minutes. Crews continued to extinguish residual hotspots for an additional two hours.

Two occupants and two animals were found dead inside a house in the 9600 block of Knolltop Road in unincorporated Union after a fire broke out early Tuesday morning. | Photo: MFRD

The residence sustained heavy fire damage throughout and is uninhabitable.

Firefighters located two victims inside the house during fire suppression operations, Vucha said.

Both adult victims, a dog and a cat were pronounced dead at the scene.

The cause and manner of death is pending investigation by the McHenry County Coroner’s Office.

Two occupants and two animals were found dead inside a house in the 9600 block of Knolltop Road in unincorporated Union after a fire broke out early Tuesday morning. | Photo: MFRD

The fire district said they remind residents to have working smoke detectors and to replace batteries every six months. “It is important to have an escape plan, practice it, and prepare to use it in the event of an emergency.”

The cause of the fire remains under investigation by the Office of the Illinois State Fire Marshal, Marengo Fire & Rescue Districts, Union Fire Protection District and the McHenry County Sheriff’s Office.

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Fire investigators are expected to remain on scene throughout the morning, Vucha added.