VIDEO: Flames jumped from unit to unit as a fire engulfed a North Coventry Township, Pennsylvania, apartment building, displacing 100 residents and leaving at least seven people, including three firefighters, hurt.
The three-alarm fire started at the Ashwood Apartments on 782 Worth Boulevard shortly after 7 p.m. Thursday. A resident told Telemundo 62's Isabel Sanchez that the fire began in a single unit before it quickly spread. The fire destroyed the entire roof and the building was evacuated with multiple people rescued. Witnesses said at least one person was rescued from the third floor.
"It was popping like fireworks exploding," Oscar Brunner, a neighbor, told NBC10. "Something was fueling it." Sherry Ruchinski, a resident in the apartment, was on the third floor watering her sister's plants when the fire began.
"I didn't take it seriously. I thought it would be out in minutes," she said. "I came down five minutes later the alarm went off and a fellow was banging saying, 'Get out. There's a fire.'"
WCAU-TV NBC 10 Philadelphia
First responders with the Reedy Creek Improvement District have launched a legal battle to collect workers compensation benefits after being tested and diagnosed with COVID-19.
Michael Grant, a paramedic with Reedy Creek since 2018, tested positive with the virus “on the job” on July 3 and quarantined at home for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommended 14 days.
“I lost taste and smell quickly and I haven’t gotten back,” Grant said. “I have a 3-year-old and a 7-year-old and obviously they were my biggest concern.”
Before working with Reedy Creek, Grant worked for the city of Palm Coast and the Seminole County Fire Department.
Records confirm he was diagnosed with COVID-19 on July 3, one day after he was on his shift with Reedy Creek.
Despite his contention that he was infected on the job, he was denied workers compensation benefits and because of a unique policy, was forced to use his own personal sick leave.
WKMG-TV CBS 6 Orlando
Four years into his budding career as a firefighter, Glenn Ericksen was used to putting out routine fires in apartments, single-family homes and small businesses in Arlington Heights.
Then in the early morning hours of July 31, 1985, he and his co-workers at the firehouse got the call they'll never forget: A fire had broken out in the Horseman's Lounge at Arlington Park. Ericksen drove the first engine that arrived on the scene.
"When we got on the grounds itself, we were met by a security guard in a vehicle flashing his lights. We've never seen that before, so it was kinda like, 'Uh oh,'" he said.
"Still, it didn't really look bad, but they were telling us the fire was on the other side of the building. We pulled out on the track surface where we saw the bulk of the fire. It's where we sat til the early afternoon that day."
Ericksen, who became Arlington Heights' fire chief years later and now coordinates a statewide firefighting response consortium, has fought a lot of blazes over the course of some four decades in the fire service.
Daily Herald - Metered Site
For over a month Tony winner Brian Stokes Mitchell serenaded the streets of Manhattan from the window of his Upper West Side apartment to honor frontline workers who were fighting against the COVID-19 pandemic. The cause, meaningful to the 62-year-old as he was diagnosed with coronavirus in late March but has since recovered.
On Thursday he sang the same song “The Impossible Dream” - this time from the New York City Fire Museum where officials unveiled plans for a new exhibition - “Unmasking our Heroes”. “It allows me to further honor the men, women, emergency service workers, the firefighter department, everyone who kept the city going during this time,” Mitchell said.
And to allow others to honor the first responders, museum officials are acknowledging the heroes who continue to put themselves in harms way to save the lives of others.
WNYW-TV FOX 5 New York
More than a year and a half after the Camp Fire, the documentary Rebuilding Paradise is finally being released to the public on July 31. The documentary, directed by Academy Award-winner Ron Howard, depicts the 2018 fire and the rebuilding efforts of the Ridge through the eyes of those who lived it.
KRCR spoke with the former mayor of Paradise, Steve “Woody” Culleton, who is featured in the doc. He says that while it may be difficult to watch as a Camp Fire victim, it's an important story about the community's strength.
"The story's not about the fire. The story's not about global warming,” says Culleton. “It's about the resiliency of the people of the town of Paradise."
The documentary was originally released at the Sundance Film Festival this past January and then later in June to some residents of Butte County in an online screening.
KRCR-TV ABC 7 Redding