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3-Year-Old May Have Started Wilmerding Fire

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(Credit: KDKA)

(Credit: KDKA)

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WILMERDING (KDKA) — An apartment building caught fire in Wilmerding.

Parents of a 3-year-old child say their son apparently started the fire with a cigarette lighter.

The building houses a sports bar, pizza shop and eight apartments.

Approximately 25 people live in the building. The owner says everyone got out safely, but the building appears to be a total loss.

A KDKA-TV Viewer sent in cell phone video of the fire as crews arrived at the scene.

The family of the 3-year-old boy was in the process of moving out. The boy’s older brother told his parents the couch was on fire.

“Everybody in that building was like family,” Robert Bayer, the boy’s father, said. “I mean, what do you say to them when it’s your child – you know what I mean? It was an accident.”

“It was so fast I didn’t know what to do,” Amber Batzel, the boy’s mother, said. “I don’t even have clothes – nothing. Everything’s gone.”

Several firefighters are being treated for heat exhaustion. A tent has been set up so crews can cool off.

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