ShareThis Page
News

Woman injured in Hempfield Towers fire remains hospitalized

| Wednesday, April 25, 2012, 4:10 p.m.

A woman who was rescued Wednesday from her burning apartment in a Hempfield high-rise by a fireman who carried her down nine floors remains hospitalized.

Jillette Glassener, 70, was hospitalized after the fire at Hempfield Towers, according to Trooper Stephen Limani, public information officer for the Greensburg state police barracks.

No report on Glassener's condition could be obtained from Pittsburgh hospitals, but Limani said yesterday that she was stable but critical.

The fire at the 10-story structure at 2500 S. Grande Ave. has been ruled accidental, Limani said.

South Greensburg firefighter Tom Lakin Jr. picked up Glassener, who reportedly suffered burns, and carried her down nine stories to a waiting ambulance.

Most of the tenants of the 202 apartments had returned to their homes by yesterday morning. Apartment 914, where the fire started, remained vacant, as did the unit below it, which sustained water damage. The tenant of that apartment was expected to return later yesterday.

"All the tenants were allowed to go back to their floors and their apartments," said Michael Washowich, executive director of the Westmoreland County Housing Authority. "The fire marshal released everybody (Wednesday) evening to go back to their apartments."

About a dozen residents were evacuated from the ninth floor, where the fire was concentrated. Washowich said that floor has about 20 units.

He said Frank Pickford, a Hempfield Towers employee who suffered smoke inhalation, was fine yesterday.

"Our fire alarm system worked flawlessly," Washowich said. "The fire company did a tremendous job with their response units. It helps that the building is a concrete fortress. In this business, you have an occasional fire. It's always very sad to have a resident injured, as we did in this case."

Rich Kepple, Midway-St.Clair fire chief, said the situation could have been much worse.

"It could have spread to different apartments," he said. "Thank goodness we were able to keep it to one apartment with minimal damage."

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