At least 20 people displaced in York City fires

Harper Ho
York Dispatch

At least 20 people have been displaced by two fires that destroyed several residential buildings last week in York City, according to officials. 

No one was seriously injured in either fire, and the Red Cross is helping the families, Fire Chief William Sleeger Jr. said. 

A residence at 34 N. West St. Saturday, June 19, 2021.  York City firefighters responded to fire there at 8 a.m. Bill Kalina photo

York City firefighters responded shortly before 7:45 a.m. Saturday to 34 N. West St. for a structure fire, where smoke could be seen billowing out of the third floor of a residential building, according to officials. 

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"Nobody was hurt. There are probably at least 10 people who are going to be displaced in that one," Sleeger said Saturday morning. "The Red Cross is going to come in and help those folks out."

He estimated the building sustained $50,000 in damages and said the cause of the fire is under investigation. 

Earlier last week in downtown York, upward of 10 people, about half of them children,  were displaced by a fire caused by children playing with sparklers, the chief said. 

The fire broke out around 8:10 p.m. Thursday in a garage in the 200 block of Fickes Way near East Gas Avenue and eventually spread to include five buildings.

The burnt remains of structures in the 200 block of Fickes Way Saturday, June 19, 2021. The fire broke out around 8:10 p.m. Thursday in a garage and spread to damage five buildings. Bill Kalina photo

Two firefighters suffered minor injuries, Sleeger said. He estimated the buildings sustained $250,000 in damages. 

State law allows the use of consumer-grade fireworks in the city, but there are restrictions. Fireworks cannot be ignited or discharged within 150 feet of an occupied structure, and they may not be ignited or discharged by a person who is under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

"It is especially important that fireworks are not used near an occupied structure. The hot summer temperatures create very dry conditions which can cause a firework to ignite a structure," York City Police said in a news release.