UPDATE: [1/19/13; 12:30 p.m.] According to West Norriton Fire Chief Kevin Guirate, firefighters from Jefferson Fire Company, with assistance from the Norristown and East Norriton fire departments, battled the blaze in the 1400 block of Sterigere Street for approximately an hour and forty minutes before the scene was brought under control. Much of the fire was contained within an hour, and the damage was confined to just the one home and attached garage.
Chief Guirate applauded the effort by his firefighters and also that of the two Norristown firefighters who arrived on the scene early and entered the building to rescue a woman trapped inside.
"They did an awesome job," said Chief Guirate. "If they didn't do what they did, we'd be talking about a different story right now."
Two residents of the home were hospitalized as a result of the incident. The cause of the fire is still under investigation.
UPDATE: [1/19/13; 11:05 a.m.] According to the West Norriton Police Department, last night's fire in the 1400 block of Sterigere Street was reported by a Bridgeport police officer who was returning from Montgomery County Emergency Services on the grounds of the State Hospital.
When authorities arrived on the scene, they found the garage of the home fully engulfed in flames. A resident on the scene advised police that a woman was still trapped inside the home and officers attempted to enter the building, but were overwhelmed by the smoke. The woman was ultimately rescued by Norristown Firefighters Robert Myers and Andy Pyles.
Both residents of the home were initially transported to Einstein Medical Center Montgomery for treatment and then flown by medevac to Temple University Hospital in Philadelphia. As of this morning, both victims were listed in critical condition.
West Norriton Police are conducting an investigation into the cause of the fire in conjunction with the Pennsylvania State Police and the Montgomery County Detective's Bureau. Anyone with information regarding the incident should contact Det. Sgt. Michael McGettigan or Det. Stephen Morris at 610-630-1701.
According to the Norristown Fire Department's website, Norristown firefighters were the first on the scene to battle a raging house fire on Sterigere Street in West Norriton early Sunday morning.
Firefighters responded to the report of a building fire at a home on Sterigere Street near Forrest Avenue, across the street from the State Hospital, just after 3 a.m. on Saturday, Jan. 19. On the scene, firefighters were directed to an unidentified woman who was still trapped inside the home.
According to Norristown Fire Chief Thomas O'Donnell, without access to a hose line, firefighters Robert Myers and Andy Pyles entered the home and located the woman. She was removed from the home and reportedly flown by medevac to a Philadelphia hospital for treatment.
"Our guys were able to get up there and be in the right place at the right time and effect a rescue," said Chief O'Donnell.
According to Chief O'Donnell, there were no other injuries as a result of the blaze, which was battled by Jefferson Fire Company with assistance from Norristown and East Norriton companies. The cause of the fire is unknown at this time.
Patch will update this story as more information becomes available.
See more pictures of last night's fire here.