Shamokin Residents Concerned After Two Fires in One Day

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SHAMOKIN -- Fear is rising among residents in Shamokin after two more fires broke out within a day.

Both fires took place Thursday in vacant buildings and police said both fires are considered suspicious.

After two fires within 24 hours in Shamokin, residents are getting very worried.

The first fire broke out inside a vacant building around 4:30 Thursday morning on Shamokin Street.

Then another vacant fire was found burning around 7 p.m. just a few blocks away, also on Shamokin Street.

“Yeah I’m concerned,” said Andy Hart. “Everybody around here should be concerned, especially living in these areas around here. You got these row homes here, it’s not just one that goes up, I mean, you have a few that go or if they do catch it in time you still have water damage. It’s going to be putting people out.”

Shamokin police said both fires are suspicious, since both buildings are vacant and no power is connected.

Investigators said this brings the total number of vacant building fires to four in Shamokin since September.

Many people believe these fires are intentional acts.

“It’s very suspicious for a house that doesn’t have electricity, no heating system, nobody living there for it to catch on fire,” said John Watkins.

“It’s like an invitation, nobody lives there, like kids that’s what they do these days,” said Pam Jaeger.

Shamokin police said they’re beefing up patrols and want residents to report suspicious activity.

Many residents hope these fire stop before someone gets hurt.

“This was a brick wall and that fell,” said Hart. “Okay now what if a fire fighter was out fighting this, all of sudden he slips on the ice and half the wall falls on somebody.”

Police are asking the owners of the vacant buildings to board them up and secure them to prevent people from getting inside.