A woman trapped on the second floor of a burning home in Ajax early Friday morning had to toss her child to safety before jumping to escape the fire, Durham police say.

The fire broke out in a home on Dooley Crescent, in the Harwood Avenue and Rossland Road area, shortly after 4 a.m.

When crews arrived, police said they encountered heavy smoke from the front of the house. They then went to the back and saw it filled with flames and thick smoke.

There, police heard a woman who was holding her child, yelling from the second-storey window.

“The officer yelled for the female to drop the child to him, which she did and he was able to carry the child away to safety,” police said in a news release Friday afternoon.

The woman then jumped from the window and sustained “significant injuries.” Police said the child suffered minor injuries while the woman was taken to a trauma centre in Toronto, where she is in stable condition.

While that was happening, crews also found a male occupant, the woman's husband, at the front of the residence without vital signs.

Police said firefighters began life-saving measures on the man before officers took over so they could continue knocking down the blaze. Paramedics arrived and transported the man to the hospital, where he remains in life-threatening condition.

The cause, origin and circumstances of the fire are unknown. Police say the fire does not appear suspicious at this time.

The Ontario Fire Marshal is investigating.

Anyone with information about this incident is asked to contact the Durham Regional Police at 905-579-1520 or Crime Stoppers anonymously at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or www.durhamregionalcrimestoppers.ca.