Fire spreads into walls of house
Peter Taraborelli, Correspondent
Shortly after noon Saturday, fire crews from Bart, Strasburg and Quarryville responded to 65 Peach Lane, Paradise Township, for a reported house fire. Rick Wentz, chief of Strasburg Fire Company, was among the first to respond.
"The house is currently being rented," Wentz said. "When the tenant returned home they saw smoke coming out of the roof, tried to open some doors and saw smoke and fire in the first floor. They tried using an extinguisher but it was too big, and they called 911."
According to Wentz, the fire seems to have started in the chimney of a wood stove and spread into the walls, quickly filling the home with smoke.
"I arrived on scene and saw heavy smoke coming from the eaves of the roof. All of the windows were pretty blacked out by smoke. We went in and found the fire, started opening up walls to get at it. We had to open up the roof to ventilate."
When asked if the house could be lived in, Wentz responded, "I would say not. There is extensive smoke damage throughout the house and fire damage between the first and second floor, where the chimney passed through the wall."
A state police fire marshal was investigating, but the cause does not appear to be suspicious. "If you are going to burn wood, coal or any of that, definite maintenance on your chimney is a big priority," Wentz said.