A woman is dead and a man is in critical condition after a two-alarm house fire in the city's west end Wednesday evening.

The fire broke out at a home on Gladstone Avenue, east of Dufferin Street, just before 7 p.m.

Toronto Fire Acting Chief Jim Jessop said crews arrived and were met with a "very difficult and deep-seated basement fire."

Jessop said two people without vital signs were rescued from the home. One of the victimswas pronounced dead at the scene, while the other was taken to the hospital in life-threatening condition.

"Certainly, on behalf of all the women and men of Toronto Fire Service, I want to extend our deepest condolences to all of those impacted by this fatal fire," he said.

"They were faced with significant fire load and significant heat. The fire actually burned up from the basement and burned away at the floor by the time our crews got here. And I can tell you they did everything they could to rescue these people. And it's just another tragic situation."

Jessop said several firefighters were assessed by paramedics after being overcome by heat. They have been deemed okay.

The fire has been knocked down. Jessop said crews will remain at the scene to conduct a fire watch and check for hot spots.

The cause and origin of the fire are not immediately known.

Jessop said Toronto Fire investigators will be attending the scene and the Office of the Fire Marshal has been notified.