Woman Injured, Pets Killed in Bear Creek Township Fire

BEAR CREEK TOWNSHIP -- A woman was injured and several pets are dead after a fire destroyed a home Luzerne County.

Fire crews tell us that woman has minor burns from trying to get two cats and a dog out of the fire, but the pets did not survive.

There's not much left of a home off Velma Lane in Bear Creek Township after a fire ripped through the place around 9:30 a.m. Wednesday.

Fire officials say Rebecca Gromel was burned trying to save her dog Dusty and two cats Cassie and Shilo.

"As much of a dog lover as I am, certainly we want people not to put themselves in danger like that," said neighbor Paul Vanmaanen.

Gromel and a friend were able to get out in time, but it wasn't easy for firefighters to put out the flames.

Tankers from as far away as Harveys Lake were called in because firefighters needed additional help. The hydrants had frozen because of the cold weather and fire crews had to break one foot of ice on Mountain Lake to get water to fight the fire.

"When there is something like this, obviously it's difficult in getting water and that's why you saw all the engines going back and forth to the lake," Vanmaanen said.

The owner tells Newswatch 16 she thinks a candle near a couch caused the fire. She tried to put some water on it, but it didn't do enough.

"The firemen in this area, certainly in this kind of weather, really have to put forth 100 percent effort.

Gromel refused treatment for her burn injuries from the fire, but she is being helped by the Red Cross.