By Eric Slagle – Trib Total Media
An electrical problem is believed to have caused a truck fire in McKeesport on Thursday.
Marlon Barnes said he was driving the Ford F-150 pickup across the Jerome Bridge at about 12:20 p.m. when “smoke started coming from the hood.”
Barnes said he didn’t want to abandon the vehicle on the bridge. So he kept driving until he could get it off Lysle Boulevard. Barnes made the first available right and parked across from the Family Dollar store.
He said he ran into the store and asked someone to call for help.
Fire crews were on the scene quickly but not before the fire burned a hole through the hood.
Barnes said he was taking a load of wood and other debris from a demolition project in Glassport to Homewood when the incident occurred.
By Patrick Cloonan – McKeesport Daily News / Triblive.com
McKeesport’s public works director said one of his crewman escaped serious injury when an earthmover tipped over in a downtown lot on Wednesday at the noon hour.
“It was a bad move,” city public works director Steve Kondrosky acknowledged.
He and other city officials gathered at the scene to try to figure out how to get the 70,000-pound piece of equipment back on its wheels.
A McKeesport Ambulance Rescue Service crew treated the driver of the rig at the scene for an elbow injury after the accident.
McKeesport police and fire crews were called along with city paramedics.
The machine tipped over on a 1.4970-acre vacant lot along Twelfth Avenue and Walnut Street in the city’s Third Ward.
“We’re stockpiling dirt for fill during demolition work,” Kondrosky said. “He was trying to level out the pile.”
The city is using a lot of that fill these days.
By KDKA / Trina Orlando
MCKEESPORT (KDKA) – Firefighters had to deal with some tricky conditions to battle a train fire in McKeesport Tuesday morning.
According to officials at the scene, the incident happened around 2:15 a.m. in a rail yard under the Duquesne-McKeesport Bridge.
Initially, the train operator didn’t know his load was on fire, but a passing train flagged him down. The operator stopped the train and isolated the problem to keep it from spreading.
The CSX train was passing through on its way from New Castle to Cumberland, when one of the train’s engines caught on fire.
Train traffic was temporarily stopped so crews could stretch hoses across the tracks. They used foam to douse the flames.
The train was hauling ethanol, which could have made the situation even worse. However, CSX said they prepare for situations like this by placing buffer cars between engines and the cars hauling hazardous materials.
No one was injured, but the engine suffered significant damage.
The rest of train eventually continued on its route.
By Jennifer R. Vertullo / photo by Kathi A. Wilcox – McKeesport Daily News / Triblive.com
Frederick Bray, a beloved member of the McKeesport community best known for his accomplishment as the city’s first black fire chief, has died at 71.
Bray died on Friday in UPMC Presbyterian Hospital, where he underwent surgery on May 27. Bray’s wife of 37 years, Faith Baldwin-Bray, said he remained hospitalized following a non-life-threatening procedure.
“His death was sudden,” Baldwin-Bray said. “No one saw it coming.”
Bray retired from the McKeesport Fire Department in January 2005 after nearly 38 years of service. He began his career as a firefighter in 1968 and was named chief in 1994.
“He was the first progressive fire chief we had,” firefighter T.J. Perciavalle recalled. “We would’ve still been fighting fires like we did 20 years before that if it wasn’t for him. He was interested in new equipment, new technology and new ways of doing things.”
Chief Kevin Lust described his predecessor as a “fantastic guy, who was down to earth, graceful and proper.” He said Bray was an asset and a friend to fellow firefighters.
By Heather Abraham – KDKA
MCKEESPORT (KDKA) – A child is presumed dead in a fire that destroyed three homes and damaged another Sunday night.
According to officials at the scene, the fire broke out at a home on Soles Street and quickly spread to three adjacent homes.
Four families have been displaced as a result of the fire.
Firefighters started to search for a child that may have been inside one of the homes.
However, the intense flames forced them to pull back.
A woman lived in the house with her two children along with her sister and her two children. She was watching the kids and the child that is presumed dead is the child of her sister.
By Eric Slagle / photo by Cindy Shegan Keeley – McKeesport Daily News
McKeesport firefighters responded to an upstairs blaze in a brick house at the corner of Wigham and Locust streets on Wednesday at about 3:30 p.m.
A 40-year-old man who identified himself as a renter and sole occupant of the home said he was out when a neighbor called and told him the building was on fire.
The man said he believes the fire may have started in a kitchen area on the second floor. He said he isn’t sure where he will go.
“They said Red Cross can probably help me. So I’ll talk to them,” he said.
Fire Chief Kevin Lust said crews quickly knocked down the fire but not before it spread into the eaves and attic.
A neighbor complained that there are too many old and abandoned homes in the area that pose fire risks.
First responders applied salt to the street in front of the structure to prevent ice from building up around a fire hydrant and hose.
McKEESPORT (KDKA) — An abandoned house went up in flames in McKeesport Saturday afternoon.
It happened in the 900-block of Soles Street.
A police officer driving by spotted smoke coming out of the house.
Firefighters say it started in the third floor attic.