Man burned in apartment fire

June 24, 2003|by RICHARD F. BELISLE

WAYNESBORO, Pa. - A Waynesboro man was in stable condition at Waynesboro Hospital Monday night after being burned on his arms and face in a fire in his third-floor apartment on West Main Street.

The building also houses the office of state Rep. Patrick Fleagle, R-Franklin. The office was not damaged.

According to Waynesboro Fire Chief Dale Fishack, the fire started when Robin Stake of 114 W. Main St., Apt. 3, was carrying hot food off the kitchen stove.

The entire apartment, which runs from front to back in the three-story brick building on the corner of West Main Street and Cleveland Avenue, was destroyed by the flames and intense heat and smoke, Fishack said.


Stake apparently tried to douse the flames in the cooking pot in the bathtub. The bathroom is in the middle of the apartment, the chief said.

One firefighter, describing the damage, said the apartment was "black from front to back."

Stake's wife, Pamela Stake, was home at the time but was not injured, Fishack said.

He said the couple was in their early 20s.

The apartment below the Stakes is rented to John and Liabeth Beasley. The Beasleys, who have a young baby, were not home at the time, Fishack said.

David Mackley, Fleagle's aide, said firefighters entered the office and covered computers and other office equipment with tarps to prevent damage.

"The also let us in to take pictures off the wall," Mackley said.

Fleagle, who was en route home from Harrisburg, arrived on the scene less than a half-hour after the 8:10 alarm. He was not available for comment.

The building is owned by Robert Correll of Zullinger, Pa., Fishack said.

He said Stake was expected to be transferred to a hospital with a burn unit, but a spokeswoman at Waynesboro Hospital said that had not occurred by Monday night.

Smoke was coming from the back of the third floor apartment when the first units arrived. Firefighters gained entrance off an upstairs back porch.

Traffic was detoured around the fire scene and a crowd of people had assembled across the street from the building.

Ladder trucks reached the roof on both sides, but it appeared as if the fire was being fought from inside the building.

In addition to Waynesboro crews, units from Leitersburg, Mont Alto, Pa., and New Franklin, Pa., were at the scene.

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