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Flames Destroy Home in Monroe County

A home in Monroe County was gutted by fire just a day after the couple who lived there moved in, according to fire officials.

Hours after flames gutted a home on Washington Place in Coolbaugh Township fire crews were back dousing hot spots that flared up.

A state police fire marshal went through what was left, trying to figure out what started the fire that caused all the damage.

“We saw the big flames and it was orange. We saw them over the trees, and there was a lot of smoke and then the fire trucks started coming,” said neighbor Michael Amaro.

Firefighters were called to the home near Mount Pocono just before midnight.

The fire chief believes the flames started near the front door, which he said was the only door in and out of the home.

The chief said the couple who lived in the home had just moved in the day before. They made it out, but a pet dog did not.

“It was heartbreaking. I felt terrible about the dog and I felt terrible that we couldn’t do anything about it,” said neighbor Albert Russo.

Retired New York City firefighter Albert Russo rushed to help, but said the blaze was too intense.

“When I ran out and I saw the neighbor run over and I went right by there and felt the heat and saw the flames and at point, the entrance to the house was fully involved,” added Russo.

Fire officials said there are no fire hydrants in the area, so crews had to rely on tankers to bring in thousands of gallons of water to try to put out the flames.

“We rely upon our own tankers plus tankers from neighboring departments to bring tankers of water, anywhere from 2,500 to 3,000 gallons of water per tanker. So we want to make sure we have plenty of water, not only is it enough to put the fire out, but to keep everybody safe on scene,” said Captain Paul Denico with Coolbaugh Township volunteer fire company.

Neighbors said the home was being fixed up and said it is a shame to see it all destroyed.

“She saw the burned window and she said almost everything inside was burned because I know they were renovating the whole thing. The neighbors were nice people,” said neighbor Tom Girgas.

Neighbors said the fire could have been worse, but thankfully no human lives were lost.

“Houses can be replaced. Material things can be replaced and repaired,” added Russo.

Officials said the man and woman forced from their home are staying elsewhere.

A cause for the fire has not yet been released.


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