HAZLE TOWNSHIP (LUZERNE COUNTY, PA): On February 6, 2012 at 19:00 hours the APTS EMS, Hazle Township and West Hazleton Fire Departments were dispatched to a house fire at 638 Winters Avenue in Hazle Township. The first fire units arrived to find large flames coming from the front of the single story home. The fire chief then request the second alarm be dispatched to the scene for a working house fire. McAdoo Ladder and Engine were dispatched to the scene to assist with operations. Freeland, Harwood, and Sugarloaf fire companies were put on stand by in their stations.
Fire fighters found the two residents out side their home with possible smoke inhalation. The male and female homeowners were rescued by two neighborhood men prior to the fire department’s arrival. The two neighbors ran into the burning home to remove the wife and handicap husband. The injured couple was transported to the Hazleton Hospital by EMS. The husband was later flown to a trauma center out side the area.
Hazle Township Engine 102, Engine 103, and Tower 107 staged at Winters Avenue on Side Alpha. Engine 103 hooked to a hydrant at 5th Street and Winters Avenue. Engine 103 laid in and supplied Engine 102 with hydrant water. West Hazleton Engine 241 lay in from a hydrant at Yuknis Street and Winters Avenue. Engine 241 and Hazle Township Tower 105 staged to the rear of the home on Chupailo Street. McAdoo Ladder 49-22, Engine 49-15 and West Hazleton Rescue 245 staged on 5th Street and sent their crews to assist Engine 241.
Fire fighters mounted a defensive attack in the first minutes due to the front of the home being fully involved. The engine crews advanced large hose lines to Side Alpha to knock down the heavy fire. A number of hose lines were deployed from Engine 241 and placed into service on Side Delta. Hose lines were used from the exterior to darken down the fire through out the home. A fire that was burning in the basement was also knocked down from outside the home. The second alarm companies responded and staged in the area of the fire scene. The crews reported up to the front of the structure to wait for assignments.
The heavy fire that was through out the home was knocked down in twenty minutes. It was determine the structure was safe enough for crews to mount an interior attack. Fire fighters then entered the home to finish extinguishing hot spots and to overhaul. The additional West Hazleton and McAdoo fire fighters provided RIT and backed up the first attack crews.
Incident Command then ordered Sugarloaf and Harwood engine companies into scene for additional manpower. The crews reported up to the front of the structure to relieve the first crews and overhaul the house.
The fire was place under control in an hour with all visible fire extinguished. The one story home received major damage and may have to be torn down. The second alarm units were released from the scene by 23:00 hours.
Emergency medical personnel from APTS and West Hazleton Ambulance stood by on the fire scene and provided rehab to the fire fighters. Fire fighters from Freeland stood by at the Hazle Township fire station through out the incident. West Hazleton Fire Police assisted the Hazle Township Fire Police in directing traffic around the fire scene. Hazle Township Fire Fighters remained on the scene to wait for the fire marshal and protect against any rekindles.