GLASSPORT (KDKA) — Several firefighters had to be treated for heat exhaustion while battling a three-alarm fire in Glassport Tuesday afternoon.
The house fire was first reported after 1 p.m. in a group of rowhouses at Monongahela Avenue and 8th Street.
The fire went to three alarms so crews could bring in extra manpower due to the day’s extreme temperatures. Departments from several surrounding municipalities were called in.
“The heat index is around 100, you’re putting that gear on and going into a building that’s well over 1,000 degrees, it’s very taxing on these guys,” McKeesport Ambulance Chief William Miller.
Fire officials told KDKA’s Kym Gable firefighters could only stay inside the building for short periods of time.
Several measures were taken to keep them cool. Tents were set up as cooling stations, and a Port Authority bus was also brought in.
Two firefighters were hospitalized, one for heat exhaustion and the other for treatment of lacerations. Others were treated at the scene.
“Four or five, I’m not sure on the exact count for heat exhaustion,” said Glassport Fire Chief Bruce Snyir. “Couple were transported to Jefferson Hospital. Every 10-15 minutes, they’re coming out, they’re going to rehab, they sit in there till their vitals are back to normal.”
The structure was unoccupied, with several units inside.
The Allegheny County Fire Marshal was called to the scene to investigate the cause.