ShareThis Page
Carnegie/Bridgeville

Unattended cooking led to fatal fire in Carnegie apartment building

| Wednesday, March 7, 2018, 6:45 p.m.
Firefighters remained at the scene of a Friday night fire in Carnegie on Saturday, March 3, 2018. The blaze engulfed the building that houses the popular PaPa J's restaurant on the first floor.
Tony LaRussa | Tribune-Review
Firefighters remained at the scene of a Friday night fire in Carnegie on Saturday, March 3, 2018. The blaze engulfed the building that houses the popular PaPa J's restaurant on the first floor.
Ice that formed from the water used to douse a fire in Carnegie clings to the exterior of PaPa J's at the corner of East Main Street and Broadway Avenue on Saturday, March 3, 2018. The restaurant has been a fixture in the borough since 1987.
Tony LaRussa | Tribune-Review
Ice that formed from the water used to douse a fire in Carnegie clings to the exterior of PaPa J's at the corner of East Main Street and Broadway Avenue on Saturday, March 3, 2018. The restaurant has been a fixture in the borough since 1987.
Firefighters at the scene of a fire in the apartments above PaPa J's restaurant in Carnegie the night of March 2, 2018. Medics transported two people to the hospital.
Christine Zirngibl | Tribune-Review
Firefighters at the scene of a fire in the apartments above PaPa J's restaurant in Carnegie the night of March 2, 2018. Medics transported two people to the hospital.

The deadly apartment fire Friday night at the corner of East Main Street and Broadway Avenue in Carnegie that killed a man was caused by unattended cooking, according to Matt Brown, Allegheny County fire marshal.

A person whom authorities did not identify fell asleep while cooking, according to a statement released Wednesday.

Brown ruled the fire accidental. An investigation is ongoing.

The man who died was a longtime maintenance worker for the family that owned the building. John Michael Wells, 64, who lived in the three-story building at the corner of East Main Street and Broadway Avenue, was rushed to UPMC Mercy shortly after the five-alarm fire broke out about 10 p.m.

Wells was pronounced dead about 5:30 p.m. Saturday, according to the Allegheny County Medical Examiner's Office.

The well-known restaurant PaPa J's is on the first floor.

Michael Troiani, whose family owns the building and restaurant, said Wells had done maintenance for the family's properties since 1987.

At least one person had to be rescued from an upper-floor window with a ladder truck. A second victim, whose name and condition have not been released, also was taken to the hospital, according to Brown.

A third person was evaluated at the scene but not taken for medical treatment, Brown said.

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.

click me