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Woman Safely Evacuated from Burning Home
Written by Larry Roeder, Editor
2021-07-14

            A fire broke out in a home in the 500 block of West Fifth Street around 6:25 p.m. on Monday, trapping a woman on the second floor of the duplex structure.

            The Emergency 911 call center was notified of the fire by the woman's son who advised that his mother was not mobile and he was attempting to get her out of the house.

            Firefighters quickly arrived on the scene and reported heavy smoke coming from the front door and second floor of the home with both mother and son on the second floor.

            The volunteer firefighters entered the front door with two inch-and-three-quarter hose-lines, through thick smoke, and sweltering heat while others entered and went directly to the victims on the second floor.  The first group worked their way through the rooms to find the source of the fire while the second group stayed with the ambulatory victim in a safe area on a second floor porch and administered oxygen to her.  Firefighters evacuated her son, who was able to climb down a ground-ladder from the porch.

            According to Pennsburg Chief Scott Seip, close quarters and other obstacles challenged firefighters in their attempts to evacuate the victim as they were unable to maneuver mobile rescue equipment close to the building.  However the volunteers were quickly able to discover the source of the fire and extinguish it, allowing the rescuers to aid the victim in evacuating back through the building and avoiding other rescue measures from the back porch.

            Both mother and son were transported to Lehigh Valley Hospital for smoke inhalation.

            Fire and water damage was confined to a second floor bedroom but the entire home suffered extensive smoke damage.  No damage estimate was available.

            According to Seip, about 70 volunteers responded to the call and worked through a 90+ degree temperature and high humidity, along with a thunderstorm, during the event.  Emergency medical workers set up a "rehab" site to monitor and aid firefighters.

            The cause of the fire is under investigation but is believed to be electrical in nature.

            Assisting Pennsburg Fire Company at the scene included fire and fire police units from Eastern Berks Fire Department, East Greenville, Green Lane, Hereford Township, Milford Township, Quakertown and Red Hill.

            Emergency Medical Service units responding included Upper Perkiomen Valley Ambulance, Gilbertsville Ambulance, St. Luke's Emergency Transport Services and Bally Community Ambulance.

            Canteen units from the North Penn Goodwill Service also responded.

            Fire units from Gilbertsville and Lower Frederick Fire Companies were on standby at Pennsburg's station.

            West Fifth Street and Perkiomen Avenue were closed until about 9 p.m.


 

 

 

 

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