It only took 15 minutes for firefighters and police in Mahanoy City to react and save multiple row homes and their occupants as they responded quickly to a rising row home fire, with possible entrapment, that started just before 10:45 p.m. last night on the 300 block of East Pine Street in Mahanoy City.
The fast-moving fire left seven people displaced.
Mahanoy City Police and firefighters stated that 8-foot high flames were shooting out the windows and roof of 326 East Pine St. The home located at 326 East Pine St. suffered severe fire damage, while the adjacent homes, 324 and 328 East Pine St. suffered heavy smoke, heat and water damage. The home of 330 East Pine St., also part of the row home, only suffed little smoke damage.
Judy Green and Barbara Bonsall, owners of 330 East Pine St., stated, "The fire would have destroyed all four homes, if it wasn't for the quick action of the firefighters." While 326 East Pine St. was burning, two Mahanoy City Police officers, David Lawrence and Corporal Mike Dissinger rushed into the adjacent home of 328 East Pine St.and carried an elderly woman down the steps and out her home to safetly. Responding to the blaze were fire companies, rescue responders and ambulances from Mahanoy City, Ryan Township, Tamaqua, Shenandoah and other surrounding communities. Tony Blackwell, safety officer, Mahanoy City Fire Company, stated, "All the responding fire companies put a quick stop the rising blaze."
Officials stated that the fire resulted from an electric fire that started in the third floor bedroom of 326 East Pine St. No serious injuries were reported. All three of the families are being helped by the Eastern Northumberland and Schuylkill chapter of the American Red Cross. Four of the fire victims are currently staying with family, while the other three victims, of 326 East Pine St., are staying in a Frackville hotel, courtesy of the Red Cross. Green added, "The Mahanoy City Police Department and all the responding firefighters are our heroes!"