Fire Weakens Apartment Building

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A vacant apartment building that burned early Monday morning will have to be demolished.

Investigators said an electrical problem caused the blaze in Pottsville.

The apartment building is on East Market Street and has six units. The fire raced through the building and made it to the roof.

The fire weakened the structure and city officials want it torn down.

Neighbors, including John Kutch and his wife, Pat, are not surprised by the fire.

"We seen the flames coming out of the roof and they were pretty bad and a lot of smoke a lot of smoke," John Kutch said.

Pat Kutch said the fire scared her. "We had just DVR'd "Backdraft" and we were watching it last evening and it was ironic that and we had a fire in the city. It was very scary. These structures are very old and I was concerned the whole block would go," said Pat Kutch.

Fire Chief Todd March blames a problem in an electrical box for the stubborn blaze.

"That wall happened to be where all the pipes and wires ran up the building and the fire traveled up there like a chimney right to the roof area burning all the walls all the way up and it got to the roof area," Chief March said.

Officials said the building was originally condemned in October and it's been empty since then. Residents had five days to find a new place to live.

Shannon Reed,moved to Minersville. "I would like to thank Dave Parcavage as far as being on the up and up as far as a code enforcement officer. He probably saved some lives when getting us out of there when he did," Reed said.