Local

Warehouse Destroyed After Raging Fire Rips Through Business

(Photo Credit: KDKA Photojournalist Tim Lawson)

(Photo Credit: KDKA Photojournalist Tim Lawson)

Bob Allen Bob Allen
Bob Allen joined the KDKA-TV team in January 2000 as a General...
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PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – More than 100 firefighters from 15 different companies battled a raging fire that destroyed part of a Fayette County business.

It started late Saturday morning behind Chroma TV and Appliances in Connellsville.

When firefighters from Connellsville arrived, a warehouse and three trailers were already engulfed in flames and thick smoke.

“We were called for rubbish burning that had gotten out of control,” said Joe Kosinski, of the Connellsville Fire Department. “There was a breeze that might have kicked it a little bit.”

“It was an accident,” Dawn Ritenour, an employee, said. “Saturday is usually our burn days, and you know, he was doing it and it was just like a smolder back there.”

The heat was so intense it leveled a concrete wall and destroyed all of the contents inside the warehouse.

Eventually, dozens of firefighters from two counties and thousands of gallons of water from tanker trucks were needed to bring the fire under control.

“It was just blazing fire, the smoke, everything going crazy,” said Ralph Hough, a neighbor. “Then, the wind was blowing, it just took off.”

“There are hydrants here, but because of the water supply required and the number of trucks brought in, we wanted to make sure we are really well covered in our water supply,” Kosinski said.

Chroma TV and Appliances has been in Connellsville for decades.

The main showroom was untouched, but the warehouse was destroyed.

The warehouse that was destroyed was where the company stored surplus furniture, appliances and mattress sets. No one’s ready to calculate the dollar loss, but it’s expected to be excessive.

“We just did inventory, which was good, so that’s going to give us a little bit of help to determine what’s missing,” said Kosinski.

The business reportedly has insurance, and despite the losses, it will continue to be a mainstay in the Connellsville community.

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