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Cats die in Pa. home fire

March 08, 2002|BY STACEY DANZUSO

FAYETTEVILLE, Pa. - A Fayetteville, Pa., woman escaped injury Thursday afternoon when a mobile home attached to her house caught fire.

People driving by 1821 Black Gap Road said they heard an explosion and saw smoke and called 911 at 12:44 p.m.

"I heard a pop, pop, pop, and then an explosion. I saw smoke billowing out," of the mobile home, said Debbie Heefner, of Fayetteville.

She was driving on Black Gap Road and pulled over when she saw the smoke.

"I didn't see any flames, it was all engulfed in smoke," she said.

Kay Beck, of Ortanna, Pa., said she was driving home from work and saw the smoke and stopped.

Beck and Heefner said they were told by a neighbor that an 88-year-old woman was inside.

"We started pounding on doors," Beck said.

Beck said they found the woman in a home that was attached to the mobile home by a breezeway and led her outside. She said they went back in for her wheelchair and cats.

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Smoke ultimately forced them out and they were not able to save the cats, Beck said.

The charred mobile home was tucked off the side of Black Gap Road, also known as Pa. 997, and an acrid smell of smoke hung in the air after firefighters put out the blaze.

When the first firefighters arrived, they found heavy smoke coming from the mobile home, and the owner and occupant, Glades Mackling, outside, according to Fire Chief Max Lenherr.

Firefighters found fire inside and under the mobile home, Lenherr said.

No one was injured, but Lenherr confirmed several cats died in the fire.

It was not clear what started the fire, and the State Police Fire Marshal is investigating, he said.

The estimated loss was $25,000. The Red Cross was called in because the home was uninhabitable, according to fire officials.

Fire officials could not confirm Mackling's age.

Fire companies from Fayetteville, Mont Alto, Pa., New Franklin, Pa., and Shippensburg, Pa., and the Franklin County Air Unit responded to the scene.

Fire police closed a section of Black Gap Road Thursday afternoon. It reopened when the final units cleared the scene at 3:20 p.m., Lenherr said.

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