Three people hospitalized, two in critical condition, following north Omaha house fire

Three people were taken to the hospital early Monday following a house fire in north Omaha.

The fire was reported at 12:45 a.m. at 3742 Himebaugh Ave. The people who were in the house had gotten out of the house before fire crews arrived, fire officials said. The three were taken to the Nebraska Medical Center, two in critical condition and one in serious condition. The two people in critical condition later were taken to the burn unit at St. Elizabeth Regional Medical Center in Lincoln.

Police had been at the address earlier in the evening to investigate a reported assault, according to emergency scanner traffic. The person suspected of committing the assault reportedly was inside the house during the fire, but it later was reported that he no longer was inside and had left in a vehicle toward the east.

A short time later, the man was in police custody suffering from burns, according to 911 reports.

Firefighters saw large amounts of smoke and flames as they approached the house, Battalion Chief Scott Fitzpatrick said.

Firefighters brought the fire under control about an hour after they declared a working fire at the address, Fitzpatrick said. The house, valued at $58,500, was a total loss.

Two family dogs escaped the fire, and animal control officers from the Nebraska Humane Society were attempting to rescue them. The cause of the fire was under investigation.

World-Herald staff writer Susan Szalewski contributed to this report.