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Volunteers prevent fire from spreading

By Staff | Nov 20, 2012

An Armstrong Township home on Route 15 was damaged by an early morning fire on Wednesday, Nov. 14. The fire at 1936 Route 15 broke out about 3:40 a.m. and was brought under control about 20 minutes after volunteer firefighters arrived on the scene, according to borough Fire Chief William Shaffer.

The homeowner managed to call 911 and get out on his own, Shaffer said.

“The fire appeared to be in a game room” on the first floor, Shaffer said, adding that firefighters were successful in preventing the fire from spreading.

To reach the house, firefighters had to stretch about 1,000 feet of hose up a long driveway, he added.

The cause of the fire remained under investigation.

Firefighters from the borough, Clinton Township, DuBoistown, Nisbet, Hepburn Township and Montgomery responded to the fire.

The fire caused more than $200,000 in damage and left the sole male occupant homeless for several weeks, according to South Williamsport fire investigators.

It has been determined the fire was accidental and caused by a wood burner in a game room, said the borough’s chief fire inspector, Al Cole, and Judy Berfield, the assistant fire inspector.

The home owner, whose identity was not released, was awakened by smoke and managed to get out of the house on his own, Cole said.

Volunteer firefighters had the bulk of the fire knocked down in about 30 minutes.

Structural damage was set at $150,000 while damage to contents was another $100,000, Cole said.

The owner has fire insurance and his insurance company was helping him pay for emergency shelter.

This owner had no smoke alarms in the house, Cole said, adding that he encouraged everyone to have working alarms in their homes.