An unattended candle was the cause of a fire that left three people homeless, left a good Samaritan and a firefighter hurt and created a traffic mess in South Bethlehem, according to published reports.
The fire broke out at 811 Vernon St. after 3 p.m., while mother and son were out for lunch celebrating her 81st birthday, according to wfmz.com. They had lived at the house for 50 years.
A nurse, Neici Talverna, who broke into the burning house to check for occupants then rescued the family dog, was injured by broken glass, according to The Express Times. A firefighter suffered a neck injury battling the blaze, the newspaper reported.
Emergency crews were forced to shut Wyandotte Street, Route 378, while dealing with the fire. Vernon Street is an alley that is attached to and runs just east of Wyandotte Street.
The fire gutted the second floor and attic of 811 Vernon and spread to 813 Vernon, where an attic was also gutted, according to The Morning Call.
The Red Cross responded to the scene, providing food, clothes and lodging to the mother and son and food and lodging to the single resident of 813 Vernon St.
The Red Cross also provided canteen services to emergency responders who fought extreme cold in addition to the fire.