ROSCOE (KDKA) — Fire forced more than a dozen people out of an apartment building in Roscoe, Washington County.
That same building was hit by a fire just last year, but last night’s fire was much more devastating.
“I was thinking, oh my God, the building is going to catch on fire, I’m not going to have a place to live,” said fire victim Tina Koskoski.
Koskoski was reliving a nightmare, when a fire broke out, Saturday night, in her apartment building on Furlong Avenue in Roscoe. It was the second time in seven months that the building was hit by a fire.
“Right now, I’m the one who found the first fire,” Koskoski said. “Now, I found this fire. Don’t know what to do. I’m really panicked. I’m scared.”
Scared, for good reason, because the fire was much worse than the first one in November. When firefighters showed up, thick smoke was pouring from the windows. They battled extreme heat and humidity, while searching for the origin.
“It was a rough night,” said Fire Chief Tod Mauk. “Trying to find the fire was the biggest challenge we encountered, just with the numerous additions on the building crawl spaces, and what not.”
“I seen them bust in my living room window, put a hose in — everything, all the pictures of my mom, the pictures of my daughter, everything is gone,” said fire victim Danielle Szedon.
Szedon moved here less than a month ago, she says all her clothing was destroyed, as well.
“My daughter has nothing but a bathing suit on her, right now,” Szedon said.
Before it was over, three firefighters and four residents were treated for heat and smoke-related illnesses.
The state fire marshal is investigating the cause, which could be accidental, like the last fire. This morning, residents came back to salvage possessions.
“Ten times worse than last time,” said fire victim Christy Roland. “Smoke everywhere; smoke everywhere, shower nasty, just a lot of damage.”
Sue Chilzer’s losses can’t replace nine of her pets who perished in the fire.
“Horrible, I can’t even talk about it,” Chilzer said. “I lost all my animals. Nobody wouldn’t do anything.”
A number of residents say they lost everything in this fire, and the American Red Cross is now assisting them with food, clothing or shelter. As they try to piece their lives back together, residents say they’re just glad no one was killed.