A resident of the Springdale Manor high-rise fell asleep while smoking and caused a small fire in his apartment Monday morning, officials said.
“Fortunately, the smoke detector woke him up and he dumped water on the fire in the carpet,” said Allegheny County Housing Authority police Sgt. Ed Mogus.
Had the smoke detector not roused the resident, Mogus said, “We might have had a tragedy.”
Raising the potential for danger: Mogus said the man uses an oxygen tank to help him breathe, and smoking around the tanks is an explosion hazard.
The fire started just after 9 a.m. at the eight-story, 90-apartment building on Pittsburgh Street.
Authority police Chief Mike Vogel said no other apartments were damaged, and authorities did not evacuate the building.
The authority, which manages the property, could take steps to remove the resident because smoking isn’t allowed in the building and the ban is spelled out in residents’ leases, according to Vogel. The authority’s website said all authority properties became smoke-free in February 2017. The resident was not identified.