Below-freezing temps complicate early morning firefight in Carrick



CARRICK, Pa. - Firefighters said they had a difficult time battling a blaze at a home in Carrick early Tuesday morning because of below-freezing temperatures and other complications.

Channel 11's Brittny McGraw reported that the blaze began around 4:30 a.m. at a home on Plateau Street.

Firefighters said water used to fight the flames quickly froze on the roadway. A city of Pittsburgh crew was called to the scene to salt the roadway.

The fire chief said the house was recently remodeled, which also caused some problems for firefighters attempting to get into the home.

When Channel 11 News arrived at the scene, flames could be seen shooting through the roof. Officials said it appears that the blaze began on the first floor of the home.

The two people who live at the home were not inside when the fire began. However, neighbors said they didn’t know if there was anyone inside the home so they made every effort to make sure no one was injured.

“I was thinking there were people in there, so I wasn’t going to touch the door,” neighbor Ellie Scasserra said. “I went to the front door, opened it and just started banging on the door screaming, ‘There’s a fire!’ I was just banging and banging.”

Scasserra said she smelled smoke and saw it in the air, so she located the house and called 911.

“We looked over the hill and she said, ‘That’s a fire.’ There was smoke pouring out of the roof,” Scasserra said. “(Another neighbor) was right behind me. He kicked the door, inhaled a lot of smoke and ducked down. He was screaming the homeowner’s name to get out.”

The cause remains under investigation.