DORMONT (KDKA) – It took firefighters two and half hours to finally put out a stubborn fire this morning in Dormont.
Numerous crews had to be called to the scene to help.
The fire broke out around 5:15 a.m. in the 3200-block of West Liberty Avenue.
The building is home to Angelina’s Pizzeria and has two apartment buildings above it.
One of the residents in the upstairs apartments smelled the smoke and then alerted his neighbors. Three people were able to escape unharmed.
Dormont’s Fire Chief says the fire started in the pizza shop and spread to the upstairs apartments.
“It was a very stubborn fire. We chased it all over the place,” said Chief Jeff Arnold, of the Dormont Fire Department. “Our biggest problem was getting the gas shut off; we could not get the gas shut off. That’s what hampered us a little bit.”
The building is a total loss.
“I don’t have any words,” said Francesco Varrati, the building owner. “I made a living there for 30 years just about, and now it’s all gone.”
At least one of the tenant’s doesn’t have insurance and lost everything in the blaze.
West Liberty Avenue had been shut down for several hours, but has since been reopened.
The Allegheny County Fire Marshal is investigating the case and said it will be a while before officials know what caused the fire.
Authorities say the building has many additions and has had electrical problems before. An electrician is expected to check out the building and determine if the cause was an electrical fire.
The Red Cross is assisting three adults with food and clothing.