McKeesport fire leaves family of 6 homeless
Flames swept through a three-story frame house in McKeesport on Thursday night, leaving a family of six homeless.
Desha Jones, her husband and their four children all had left the house at 1730 Butler St. about half an hour before the fire broke out around 7.
“I thank God for telling us, ‘Let's go bowling,'” Jones told Trib Total Media news exchange partner WPXI.
Jones' landlord Monica Dawkins said the family's dog perished in the fast-moving blaze.
One firefighter sustained a minor injury.
The fire was discovered by a McKeesport police patrol.
“They smelled smoke, noticed the house was fully involved and called it in,” police Chief Bryan J. Washowich said.
County dispatchers put the time of the call at 7:11. City firefighters, assisted by White Oak volunteers, brought the blaze under control within an hour.
“Deputy Chief Don Sabol said he saw flames on the first floor and (the fire) worked its way up the wall,” city fire Chief Kevin Lust said.
Dawkins and her husband Danny bought the house in 2007.
“I got a call,” said Monica Dawkins, who was standing outside the house with her husband. “Our daughter said a neighbor came to our residence, banging on the door, saying the rental house is on fire.”
A neighbor said the landlord had been told to change the fuses. Jones told WPXI that an electrician had been called on Sunday night.
“The house was always kept in good condition,” Monica Dawkins said. “They always kept it nice.”
A county deputy fire marshal was on the scene.
While a neighbor wondered if there was enough water, Lust said there was no problem.
“We had enough lines,” he said. “Everything was full. We handled that fire with one truck.”
Lust said the fire was limited to one house.
A spokeswoman for the American Red Cross Western Pennsylvania Region said the Jones family is being assisted with food, clothing and shelter.
Glassport volunteers were on standby and the Salvation Army responded to the scene.
Patrick Cloonan is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-664-9161, ext. 1967, or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.