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Five firefighters injured in overnight apartment fire in Red Lion

Tina Locurto
York Dispatch
A damaged unit at Hilltop Apartments in Red Lion, Sunday, Feb. 16, 2020, after it was damaged by a fire which started just before midnight on Saturday. Bill Kalina photo

Five firefighters were injured while battling an overnight three-alarm fire in Red Lion, according to Mark Walters, York County's public information officer.

Firefighters were first dispatched at 11:45 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 15, to reports of a fire at Hilltop Apartments, 125 Henrietta St. Crews didn't finish up until about 6 a.m. Sunday, York County 911 said.

The fire originated in the apartment's basement storage room, where crews quickly extinguished the flames. However, they soon realized the blaze had spread to the floors above, Walters said in a news release.

"At about the same time the crew made entry, an explosion of super-heated gases and fire accrued," the release states. "Five firefighters were transported to the hospital, and one remains hospitalized."

Aaron Kohler stands in a friend's home at Hilltop Apartments in Red Lion, Sunday, Feb. 16, 2020, after it was damaged by a fire which started just before midnight on Saturday. Bill Kalina photo

All residents from the 18 apartment units were evacuated and are receiving assistance from the Red Cross, Walters said. 

The apartment complex was originally constructed as a school, leaving "many void areas" when the building was converted to apartments later. The conversion allowed the fire to travel from floor to floor, making it difficult to stop the fire, Walters said.

The blaze is under investigation by the state police fire marshal.

A cause and damage estimates are still undetermined.

Damage near a stairway at Hilltop Apartments in Red Lion, Sunday, Feb. 16, 2020, after it was damaged by a fire which started just before midnight on Saturday. Bill Kalina photo

— Reach Tina Locurto at tlocurto@yorkdispatch.com or on Twitter at @tina_locurto.