SHENANGO TOWNSHIP (KDKA) — A woman and young daughter are dead following a devastating fire that broke out overnight at a home in Lawrence County.
Another little girl was able to escape the smoke and flames, but authorities say the mom and child who were killed became trapped inside.
KDKA’s Ross Guidotti reports officials have identified the victims as 31-year-old Lisa Oliver and 8-year-old Katherine Thomas.
The blaze broke out just after 1:30 a.m. at the home located at the intersection of Martha and Moravia Streets in Shenango Township, south of New Castle.
Officials say firefighters found the two-story home fully engulfed when they arrived at the scene.
“We did everything we could. We could not send crews in. We couldn’t stop it,” said Chief Dave Rishell, of the Shenango Volunteer Fire Department. “Apparently, they were on the top floor and the floor collapsed.”
A still unidentified 11-year-old girl also became trapped on the second floor. But officials say she was able to escape by jumping through a window.
The lone survivor was flown by medical helicopter to UPMC Mercy Hospital with burn and fall injuries.
Daylight revealed a smoldering scene of absolute destruction.
Now, as firefighters and neighbors try to get over the shock of the tragic event, it’s now the job of the state police fire marshal to determine the cause of the fatal fire.
“Everybody here has taken a beating,” said Chief Rishel. “It was just a bad night.”