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Vacant Munhall house catches fire

| Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Allegheny County Fire Marshal's Office is investigating a vacant house fire in Munhall.

The fire broke out Monday at approximately 1:15 p.m. at 1322 Margaret St.

"I came out to look in my mailbox and I saw flames shooting out of the second floor," Margaret Street resident Carl Walnick said.

"The second floor was on fire," Munhall Bureau of Fire Chief Matt Pisarcik said. "It was up in the attic space as well. They couldn't get up into the attic space because of the flooring there."

He said firefighters eventually gained access to that attic when the fire burned through.

No injuries were reported.

Pisarcik said he saw smoke when he was coming back from his lunch going up Andrew Street.

"When I came around, I saw it," he said. "The flames were coming out the two windows up top."

Pisarcik said the fire had already been called in when he phoned Munhall dispatch.

Seventeenth Avenue resident Mark Zelena said he smelled smoke when he was letting his dog outside, and went to investigate.

"It was thick black smoke," he said.

Zelena said emergency crews were quick to respond.

Pisarcik said neighbors told him the house had been vacant a few months.

He said the house's roof is gone and the home will likely have to be demolished.

The fire chief said the house next door was not damaged.

"There's a little bit of water on the floor inside," he said. "They have salvage covers down in there."

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