Seven children are dead after police say a central Pennsylvania farm house caught fire while their mother was in a barn milking cows and their father was taking a nap in a milk delivery truck.

A 3-year-old girl escaped from the blaze to alert her mother, who police believe tried to get into the home before running to a neighbour's home for help.

The woman then ran to get her husband, who had dozed off in a milk truck about a km from the house in Loysville, about 32 km outside Harrisburg. Officials say the children who died ranged in age from 7 months to 11 years old. The Perry County coroner's office says they died of smoke inhalation. The cause is under investigation. — AP