Thursday, July 30, 2015

City had recommended smoked detectors in Pa. home where fire killed 6


There were no smoke detectors in the Pennsylvania home where a fire killed six people, including four children, earlier this week.

The city of Pottsville had recommended that smoke alarms be installed in the home after an earlier police response to the residence, the Republican Herald reports.

The recommendation for the smoke detectors and carbon monoxide alarms was made in December, Pottsville city codes administrator Donald Chescavage told the newspaper.

The blaze ripped through the single-family home at 235 Pierce Street in Pottsville at about midnight Sunday, killing 30-year-old Eric Brown; his children, Elijah Brown, 2; Emily Brown, 3; Jeremiah Brown, 7; and Joy Brown, 8. Kristina Thomas, 26, also died in the fire. She is the sister of 28-year-old Kelly Brown, the mother who survived.

"This never should have happened," Fire Chief Todd March told the Republican Herald. "Smoke alarms would have given them an early warning and possibly the chance to escape."

Officials didn't have further details about the police response to the home that prompted the warning about detectors.

The cause of the fire is still being investigated.

Pottsville is situated in what's known as Pennsylvania's coal country in Schuylkill County. It is about an hour northeast of Harrisburg. The Yuengling brewery has its headquarters there.

Contact Emily Babay at 215-854-2153 or Follow @emilybabay on Twitter.

Contact the Breaking News Desk at 215-854-2443; Follow @phillynews on Twitter. staff
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