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No injuries reported after fire breaks out in Tarentum high-rise building

Residents evacuated after Tarentum high-rise building catches fire
Residents evacuated after Tarentum high-rise building catches fire 01:54

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) -- Dozens of people were evacuated from a high-rise apartment building in Tarentum because of an overnight fire.

Just after 3 Thursday morning, James Cooper woke to his neighbor pounding on his door.  

"He's like, 'Man, you need to come see this. I have smoke coming out of the ventilation of my bathroom,'" he said about the early-morning wake-up.  

An apartment on the third floor of the Golden Towers apartments was on fire and sent smoke up to the sixth floor where Cooper lives. According to fire crews, smoke is always a big concern in a high-rise building.  

"This fire occurred on the third floor, which means we really have floors four to eight because smoke obviously traveled," Eureka Fire and Rescue Deputy Chief Brad James said.  

It was a challenging night for crews because they were battling storm damage before the fire, but they were able to keep the flames to just that room.  

"(It) did not spread to other units. It did not spread into the hallway," James said.  

Firefighters had to do a partial evacuation of the building and had the remaining residents shelter in place. They said there were no reports of any injuries.  

"I wasn't really afraid. I was a little bit concerned, and a little bit nervous and kind of apprehensive about the other tenants in the building," Cooper said.  

During the day, crews were removing debris and damaged furniture from the apartment where the fire happened. Cooper said it's not the first time there's been a fire in the building. He had a neighbor's apartment caught fire after someone fell asleep with the stove on.  

"Even that one didn't turn out half as bad as this one," he told KDKA.  

The Allegheny County Housing Authority runs the building. They have not said how much damage was done.  

The exact cause is still under investigation by the county fire marshal. The Red Cross said it's offering help to four people impacted by the fire.  


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