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Crews let house burn in Somerset Co.

By: WJAC Web Staff

SHADE TOWNSHIP, Pa. -- Fire crews and the homeowner of a more than 100-year-old farm house in Somerset County took the unusual step of letting the place burn to the ground instead of trying to save the structure.

The fire at the home in the 2000 block of Shade Church Road in Shade Township, started just after 1:30 p.m. Tuesday, officials said.

After serveral hours of trying to get the fire under control, it became clear the home could not be saved, and the decision was made to let it burn, officials said.

The owner of the home said it was originally a farm house and that a family rented the home from him. No one was inside the house when the fire started and no injuries were reported.

Fire crews on scene had to rely on tankers to supply water to fight the fire initially, officials said. Nearby ponds were frozen and water couldn't be used from them. Buses were being requested to the scene to help keep firefighters warm as temperatures were near zero.

Officials said a passing motorist noticed the smoke coming from the home and called 911. An official cause of the fire has not yet been released.

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Edgar Snyder

Washington Times