LUZERNE COUNTY, PA – Around 10 PM on Sunday, April 30, Luzerne County 9-1-1 dispatched Sugarloaf Fire & EMS to 104 Center Hill Road in Sugarloaf Township for a reported residential structure fire.
Initial reports indicated 9-1-1 received multiple calls reporting a fire involving the back porch at the address with one person possibly inside. Valley Regional Medic 26 was added to the box.
A lieutenant from Valley Regional arrived on scene to find a smoke condition in the area. Sugarloaf Chief 177 requested the second alarm be put on standby while responding to the scene.
Upon arrival, the chief found a working fire in a single family dwelling that appeared to be a modified farm-type storage building; the chief requested the second alarm be dispatched to the scene. All occupants were found to be out of the building.
The second alarm brought Valley Regional, Hazle Township, West Hazleton (RIT), Nuremberg- Weston, Nescopeck Township, Foster Township and Hobbie.
Sugarloaf Engine 2 was directed to proceed up the driveway and have Engine 3 lay in behind them. Two lines were initially stretched to the front door. Valley Regional Engine arrived and hooked up to the five inch at the bottom of the driveway where a tanker dump site was set up.
Hazle Township Tower 7 arrived and was sent to assist first-in crews with fire attack. Firefighters began to make a push in through the front door as additional firefighters stretched a line to the “D” side of the building where heavy fire could be seen venting from the “C” side.
Interior crews were quickly pulled out of the building as conditions continued to worsen and the roof began to collapse near the rear of the building. A team from West Hazleton stretched a blitz fire to the “C” side and began to knock down the fire.
After a few minutes of work from the exterior lines, the bulk of the fire had been knocked down and firefighters were able to re-enter the front of the building to begin work on hot spots.
PPL was requested to the scene to disconnect the power while the American Red Cross was brought in to help with displaced residents.
The fire was placed under control around 11:30 as crews continued to mop-up the fire. At this time, most tankers were released from the scene. A State Police fire marshal was called in to the scene to help investigate the cause of the blaze.
One civilian was treated at the scene after complaining of chest pains.
Firefighters remained on the scene well into the morning hours to ensure all of the fire was extinguished.