Two firefighters were injured during a two-alarm fire that broke out at a Pottsville, PA, apartment building Tuesday.
The Republican Herald Screen Shot
POTTSVILLE, PA—A woman jumped from her second-floor, burning apartment in the city Tuesday afternoon and was seriously injured.
Flames broke out around 1:20 p.m. on the second floor of 711 W. Market St. and eventually spread to another apartment building at 713 W. Market.
The two brick buildings are separated by open spaces to the east and west, which helped stop the fire from spreading.
Pottsville Fire Chief James Misstishin said firefighters arrived within minutes and found the woman on the front porch of 711 W. Market St.
He said witnesses reported the woman jumped from a window of her apartment that was engulfed in flames.
Misstishin said the woman suffered severe burns and other injuries and was treated at the scene by Schuylkill EMS and then flown to Lehigh Valley Hospital-Cedar Crest, Allentown.
In addition to the woman, Misstishin said two firefighters — one from Pottsville and the other from Schuylkill Haven — suffered minor injuries.
The chief said the woman’s apartment was ablaze when firefighters arrived. He said crews were nearby investigating a carbon monoxide alarm when the fire call came in.
“We were close and got here quick,” he said.
Misstishin said the construction of the building made getting to and extinguishing the fire difficult.
He said the fire spread into the attic and then into the second floor and attic of 713 W. Market St.
“There were false ceilings, it was hard getting to it,” Misstishin said of the fire. “It was a nightmare.”
He said a total of eight people were left homeless by the fire, including the burned woman.
The seven others are being assisted by the American Red Cross Tri-County Chapter with food, clothing and shelter.
Anthony Davis lives in the first floor apartment at 711 W. Market St., an apartment he moved into less than a week ago.
“I was inside and all I heard was people yelling and windows smashing and ran out the back door,” Davis said.
Davis said he is new to the neighborhood and only knows that someone lives in the apartment above him but does not know who.
“I moved in five days ago, I really don’t know anyone,” he said.
Walking on West Market Street without a shirt, Davis said he hopes everyone involved in the fire was OK.
Several people were home inside 713 W. Market St. at the time and escaped unharmed.
Misstishin said smoke alarms were operational and may have prevented other injuries.
The fire was brought under control about 2:30 p.m. and Misstishin said a state police fire marshal was called in to assist in determining the cause of the blaze.
All Pottsville fire companies responded along with the Schuylkill Haven Fire Department Rapid Intervention Team.
The fire went to a second alarm, bringing firefighters from Minersville and the Tamaqua Fire Department Rapid Intervention Team to the scene after Schuylkill Haven firefighters were put to work fighting the fire.
Schuylkill EMS was on scene and traffic was diverted around the fire scene by Pottsville fire police.
The chief said Port Carbon firefighters were on standby for the city in the event of another emergency.
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