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7 adults, 3 children die in Pennsylvania house fire

A fire that tore through a Pennsylvania house killed 10 people — including three children — early Friday morning, all of whom were members of the same family and related to a volunteer fireman who responded to the blaze.

Three children, ages 5, 6 and 7, and seven adults were killed in the Nescopeck blaze, state police said. Three others were able to escape the inferno, according to first responders.

Nescopeck volunteer firefighter Harold Baker told The Citizens’ Voice of Wilkes-Barre that the victims included his son, daughter, father-in-law, brother-in-law, sister-in-law, three grandchildren and two other relatives.

“When we turned the corner up here on Dewey [Street] I knew right away what house it was just by looking down the street,” Baker told the paper. “I was on the first engine, and when we pulled up, the whole place was fully involved. We tried to get in to them.”

Thirteen dogs were also in the home went it went up in flames around 2:30 a.m., Baker told WNEP. It was unclear if any of them survived.

Volunteer firefighter Harold Baker said he was related to each of the 10 victims of the massive blaze.
YouTube / WNEP
Crews work to demolish the house destroyed by a fatal fire on the 700 block of 1st Street in Nescopeck on Aug. 5, 2022.
AP
A Pennsylvania State trooper and members of the Luzerne County Coroner’s Office are at the scene of the fire in Nescopeck on August 5, 2022.
AP

“The kids that were there and my two kids were just visiting their aunt and uncle. Those were the ones who own the house. They were there visiting and going into the pool and all that,” Baker reportedly said.

A loud popping sound or explosion was heard by neighbors, who reported seeing the home quickly go up in flames.

“They’re all dead,” a young man screamed in front of the home, some neighbors reportedly said.

A “complex criminal investigation” was underway, Pennsylvania State Police Lt. Derek Felsman said.

With AP wires