Xavier Hutsky (left) descends a ladder after helping Charles Wolfe cut holes in the roof of a home that was the scene of a fire Monday evening. Both men are volunteers from the Newburg Volunteer Fire Department.
Mirror photo by Rachel Foor
An Altoona family was left homeless ahead of the holiday season after a fire broke out and spread into their ceiling on Monday evening.
While the house on the 800 block of Frankstown Road was deemed salvageable, Chief-in-Charge Mike Yon of the Lakemont Fire Department said the real blessing was that the two individuals and three pets who lived there were able to be evacuated.
“They got out fine,” Yon said. “There were no injuries. We’re pretty blessed.”
The Lakemont Fire Department arrived at the scene just off Frankstown Road about
6:30 p.m. and were soon joined by Duncansville, Excelsior, Freedom Township, Geeseytown, Greenwood, Logan Township, Newburg and Phoenix volunteer fire departments as well as AMED.
The departments had the fire under control within 15 minutes, Yon said, although they faced a couple challenges. One was finding adequate water sources.
“Up in this area, we’re low on water because there are no hydrants,” Yon said.
He also said that having to shut down such a busy road was difficult for the police.
No cause of the fire has been determined, he said, adding the fire marshal will be on scene today to investigate.
“It’s unfortunate, but we thank everyone here who helped,” Yon said.
The Red Cross was called to assist the family.
“The challenge there is that they need to find somewhere that is pet friendly,” Yon said.
Mirror Staff Writer Rachel Foor is at 814-946-7458.