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Four-Alarm Fire Destroys 2 Homes, Damages 3 Others In Wilkinsburg

WILKINSBURG (KDKA) - Firefighters had their hands full with a four-alarm fire in Wilkinsburg early Wednesday morning.

The fire started around 3 a.m. inside a home along Pennwood Avenue.

The flames quickly spread to two neighboring homes.

One of the people living inside one of the homes ran down the street to the fire station and knocked on the door to alert firefighters.

"A civilian ran to the firehouse, which is very close to the affected buildings, knocked on the door and alerted the firefighters of the fire as they were getting dispatched,"  Pittsburgh Police Spokeswoman Emily Schaffer said.

When police and firefighters arrived on the scene, they found a dozen people outside who had escaped the fire. A Port Authority bus was called in to give the displaced residents a temporary shelter while firefighters fought the blaze.

"One of the individuals inside one of the houses possibly jumped from a window to escape," Schaffer said. "They were treated on the scene by EMS for minor injuries. We have 12 people displaced by the fire."

Investigators say a woman inside one of the houses jumped from a window to escape the flames. She was one of three people injured in the fire. They were all treated by medics on the scene.

The American Red Cross is assisting a total of seven people, five adults and two children, who were impacted by the fire.

Schaffer says two homes were destroyed and three others had extensive exterior damage. Four of the five homes were occupied at the time of the fire.

"It's very hard to look at. My grandma's been there for years. She raised people. She helped homeless people. She looked out for everybody," Chrissy Kerry said.

Kerry's grandmother lived in one of the homes that was destroyed this morning.

"Everything's gone. Her memories is gone. Her kids' memories is gone. The only thing I can [do is] thank God is my grandma's alive," Kerry said.

The flames were finally contained a little before 4 a.m. Part of at least one of the homes collapsed from the damage. There was also a lot of "popping" during the fire due to electrical lines being burned.

Duquesne Light was called to the scene to cut power to the area.

The Allegheny County Fire Marshal's Office is looking into the cause of the fire.

Later on Wednesday afternoon, what was left of one of the homes that burned was torn down.

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