Apartment Evacuated Following Morning Flames

HANOVER TOWNSHIP — Investigators are looking for the cause of the Tuesday morning fire that cleared out an apartment building near Wilkes-Barre.

The flames were out quickly.  The anxiety hung around for a while.

The first alarm at the apartment building along Diamond Avenue in Hanover Township came in around 3:30 a.m. Tuesday.

Mickey Roberts was sleeping in his apartment at the time.

“All I know is the cops came banging on my door to wake up me up and get me out,” Roberts said.

Roberts was one of the lucky ones.  The flames were above his apartment, and his escape was relatively easy.  The fire chief in Hanover Township tells Newswatch 16 the location of the flames made leading other residents to safety a real challenge.

“We had a fire that started on the back porch, back steps burned away, the only way to get in and out of the building,” explained Hanover Township Chief Jeff Tudgay.  “The police went up into that other apartment, pulled them across and brought them down before we got here.”

The chief says there were four people inside the apartment near where the fire started.  Those four, and everyone else in the building, got out safely thanks to the efforts of police and firefighters.

Roberts adds he was worried about his neighbors.

“You got belongings on the inside, hoping everybody gets out OK.”

Everyone got out of the burning building.  Firefighters from Hanover Township and surrounding communities were there to help.  There were so many fire trucks and ambulances that the Sans Souci Parkway, near Wilkes-Barre, was shut down in both directions.

Things returned to normal before the start of the morning rush.

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