Pittsburgh Four Alarm Fire

Saturday, July 8th, 2006 -- At approximately 7:30 am, City of Pittsburgh first alarm assignments were struck out for a residential structure fire in the 1900 block of 5th Avenue in the city's uptown section.

First arriving units reported heavy smoke and fire in a 3 story, wood frame row house, with a common roof. The bulk of the fire contained to the left outside unit and incident command requested a 2nd alarm. Firefighters on the first arriving truck company strategically placed their truck in the front of the structure and began to cut a trench cut in the roof between the first and second unit of the structure.

At approximately 7:55, incident command requested a 3rd alarm be dispatched for assistance. Minutes later, firefighters found that there was a false roof under the main roof and there were concerns that this second roof may be a common roof and the fire would run the length of the structure. At this point a 4th alarm was dispatched. Firefighters were able to contain the bulk of the fire in the original unit with some extension into the adjoining unit.

The fire was placed under control at 8:22 but fire units remained on the scene for some time to overhaul the structure.

Fire Battalion Chief David Smiley told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette that the fire may have been started when a two-year-old was playing with matches, however the fire was still under investigation.

One child did suffer first-degree burns and was being treated at Mercy Hospital.

This was the second fire in the same set of row houses, the first being sometime in the 1980's.