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Woman dies in West Manchester house fire

More:Coroner ID's woman killed in W. Manchester Twp. fire

A woman died after firefighters were unable to reach her during a Wednesday afternoon fire  in West Manchester Township.

Crews were called to the 2200 block of West Philadelphia Street about 12:30 p.m. Wednesday, May 1, for a fire with entrapment. 

Shortly after firefighters arrived at the scene, the coroner's office was called. Coroner Pam Gay confirmed Wednesday afternoon that a woman died.

West Manchester Fire Chief Clif Laughman said the woman was in her 70s. Crews attempted to save her, but the fire prevented them from doing so.

"The house was fully involved when we got here," the chief said at the scene.

Two other people were in the home at the time of the fire. They, too, tried to save the woman but were unable to.

They were not injured.

The chief said five people lived in the home. The Red Cross Greater Pennsylvania Region is assisting them. 

It's not clear what caused the fire, but the chief said it doesn't appear to be suspicious. He also  stressed the blaze remains under investigation. 

"At this time, we're still in the investigation phase," he said.

He said the home is a total loss. 

Fire: Carol Weaver, who lives next door to the fire, said she was in her home when she saw her windows getting foggy. 

Firefighters break out the first floor windows at the scene of a house fire in the 2200 block of W. Philadelphia Street in West Manchester Township, Wednesday, May 1, 2019. 
John A. Pavoncello photo

"Smoke was coming out of the home," she said.

Leah Schmidt, who lives nearby, heard commotion just before the fire.

"I heard screaming and yelling and some rumbling," she said.

They both said road crews called 911.

"By the time I got here, I heard sirens," Schmidt said.

Weaver said she was concerned that the fire might blow over to her home.

"It's just very scary, that's for sure," Weaver said.

Neither knew the residents of the home very well.


Chief Laughman said it took about 30 to 40 firefighters roughly 45 minutes to have the fire under control. 

Crews remained at the scene as of 2:45 p.m. Laughman said they intend to be out there for several more hours.

A fire investigator with the York County Detectives is assisting West Manchester Township Police in investigating the fire, according to Laughman. 

Check back later for updates.