EAST DEER TOWNSHIP (KDKA) — Officials investigating an early morning house fire in East Deer Township are calling the circumstances suspicious, and they are looking into the cause.

More than 30 firefighters were called in to battle the flames inside the house in the 500-block of Freeport Road.

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“I saw flames coming out the front window; it was massive,” says Phyllis Tatrn, who lives next door to the house that caught fire.

Firefighters had their work cut out for them fighting the early morning blaze. It started around 3:15 a.m. and was called in by a person driving nearby.

From the start, something wasn’t quite right.

“There were no utilities on,” said Chief Jack Bailie, of the East Deer Township Fire Department. “The electric was shut off, the gas was shut off. There’s no real way for it to start on its own.”

A section of Freeport Road had to be shut down to make room for the trucks and the firefighters.
East Deer Township was the first department to arrive.

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“The fire was coming out of the front-story window… second-story window in the front about four or five feet rolling up the face of the building and out the corner window about the same way,” said Chief Bailie. “And it was a little bit on the first floor.”

A neighbor told KDKA’s Brenda Waters that the house has been empty since last October.

“The woman that owned it died about a year ago and her daughter was living there, and I think she moved out in October,” said Tatrn.

No one was injured in the fire.

Arson has not been confirmed in this case, but the word suspicious has come into play. The Allegheny County Fire Marshal is investigating the cause.

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