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3 firefighters injured escaping flashover

One of the firefighters was seriously burned, another broke his vertebra, the third suffered minor burns

LANCASTER, Pa. — Three Lancaster, Pa. firefighters were injured early Monday morning as they tried to rescue a woman and a six-year-old girl from a two-story home. The structure flashed with the firefighters inside. reports that Lt. Andre Kelly suffered second- and third-degree burns to 20 percent to 25 percent of his body. He is in critical, but stable condition. Firefighter Thomas Bender suffered first- and second-degree burns to his hands and a laceration to his shoulder after bailing out a second-story window. He was treated and released. Firefighter Craig Roberson fractured his vertebra bailing out of the structure.

Firefighters had difficulty getting water from a nearby hydrant. The woman and the child died in the fire.

"When they first got up and started searching they found a family pet a dog, and things were happening so quickly, I believe they thought it was a child," Lancaster Fire Chief Tim Gregg told WPMT. "The firefighters that were up there are taking it very tough."

The station reports that a psychologist has been brought in to talk to the firefighters and that the cause of the fire is under investigation.

Family members of the two who died thanked firefighters for their heroic efforts.

"I just wanted to say thank you for risking your life to go in there and try to get my cousin and her niece," Diana Marin told WPMT. "We appreciate it. They went in there anyway. They risked their life and to me they did the ultimate sacrifice, going in there to protect and get everyone out safely and we really appreciate that."

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Tyler Henley Tyler Henley Tuesday, February 19, 2013 12:04:51 PM It's what we do.
Tom Kelly Tom Kelly Tuesday, February 19, 2013 5:28:12 PM Lets pray for a speedy recovery and for their families as they go through this difficult time.
Mike Wellock Mike Wellock Tuesday, February 19, 2013 5:30:36 PM Maybe I missed something. Even if they had a bad hydrant, wouldn't they have dropped the tank? A 500 gallon tank of water can go a long way...Hope the brothers well. Maybe I missed something. Even with a bad hydrant, they could drop their tank and have a charged H.L.One does not have to wait on a back-up line to drop the tank. 500 gallons of water (tank) can go a long way.
Doug Trista Hoots Doug Trista Hoots Wednesday, February 20, 2013 6:07:23 AM Ever think they may have already done that or was in the process of doing that, you should know how fast a room can flash over. Most important everyone that is an interior firefighter should know the signs of a flashover, heat mixed with smoke and rollover.

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