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Three-Alarm Early Morning Fire Tears Through Kenhorst House

This article is a direct street report from our correspondent and has not been edited by the 1st Responder newsroom.

KENHORST, PA - At 12:58 A.M. on February 28th, Kenhorst Fire Company and mutual aid were dispatched to a reported structure fire at 1432 Lancaster Ave. in Kenhorst Borough. Responding companies were advised of smoke coming from the attic.

Tower Direct EMS arrived first and confirmed a working fire with smoke showing from side 'A'. With a working fire declared, RIT was added to the assignment. Upon arrival of West Reading Ladder 64, they stretched a line into the house and began setting up the aerial to the roof. Shillington Engine 36 supplied Ladder 64 from the hydrant.

As fire conditions began to evolve rapidly with fire shooting through the roof on the 'Charlie' side, a second-alarm was requested. A second line was stretched to the rear of the structure. A second MICU was requested to the scene as EMS began treating one firefighter for minor injuries. Reading Engine 5 arrived on the second-alarm and stretched a second line through the front door of the house.

Firefighters worked in no visibility and high heat conditions on the second floor to confirm that there was fire in the walls. As other second-alarm companies began arriving, additional crews were sent upstairs with hooks to assist with opening up. As more of the manpower pool got sent to work inside the house an additional RIT team was requested to the scene.

As a team on the roof made several vent holes, interior crews worked on opening up the ceiling. Not long after the vent holes were created fire began blowing out of them. With heavy fire in the attic, Chief 69 requested a third-alarm for manpower. Once the ceiling was pulled down crews were able to knock down a bulk of the fire.

Firefighters continued to work on overhaul and checking for extension for nearly one hour until the fire was placed under control at 3:15 A.M. The Pennsylvania State Police Fire Marshal was requested to the scene for the investigation. Units began clearing the scene around 4:00 A.M. Final units cleared the scene just after 5:00 A.M. 

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