Author Topic: Pennsylvania childcare centre fire kills 5 children: police  (Read 661 times)

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Online TomSea

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Pennsylvania childcare centre fire kills 5 children: police
« on: August 11, 2019, 05:23:46 PM »
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Pennsylvania childcare centre fire kills 5 children: police
Erie Police Department said the victims died at about 1:15 a.m. Sunday
The Associated Press · Posted: Aug 11, 2019

Authorities say an early morning fire in Pennsylvania claimed the lives of five children and sent another person to the hospital.

Lt. Szocki of the Erie Police Department said the victims died in a fire in Erie reported at about 1:15 a.m. Sunday.

Fire Chief Guy Santone of the Erie Fire Department said the victims ranged in ages from eight months to seven years.

Read more at: https://www.cbc.ca/news/world/pennsylvania-fire-kills-five-children-1.5243336

First I'd heard about this. Apparently this happened at 1:15 AM early this morning. .. May God Bless the little tykes, this is quite a tragedy.

« Last Edit: August 11, 2019, 05:28:34 PM by TomSea »

Online PeteS in CA

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Re: Pennsylvania childcare centre fire kills 5 children: police
« Reply #1 on: August 11, 2019, 06:01:03 PM »
Apparently, it happened early this morning, local time.

5 children killed in day care center fire in Pennsylvania

Quote
Valerie Lockett-Slupski, standing across the street from the fire-damaged house, said she was the grandmother of four of the children, and that they were staying at the day care because their parents were working overnight, the Erie Times-News reported. She said the family had two boys and two girls and had used the day care for almost a year.

“So we are all at a loss, trying to figure out how this happened,” Lockett-Slupski told the newspaper.

The owner of the day care was flown to UPMC Mercy for treatment, Santone said. He said a neighbor was also injured.

Chief Fire Inspector John Widomski told the newspaper that the fire appeared to have started in the living room area on the first floor. The department’s two fire inspectors and three Erie police detectives trained in fire investigations are working to determine the cause of the blaze.

I had never heard of a 24-hour daycare center, but I guess it served shift workers. The "usual suspect" explanations would probably be the adult in charge fell asleep on a couch while sleeping; or maybe a child got ahold of matches or a lighter while the adult was asleep. My guesses plus $5 will get you coffee and change at Starchucks, of course.
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Online Applewood

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Re: Pennsylvania childcare centre fire kills 5 children: police
« Reply #2 on: August 12, 2019, 06:53:12 PM »
@PeteS in CA

I never heard of 24-hour daycare, but there is an establishment in my neighborhood that offers Night Care.  I guess it's good for shift workers as you said.  I do know they take in kids from a nearby daycare in the event a parent has to work overtime and cannot make it to the daycare to pick up their kids by the time the daycare closes.

Just read that 3 of the kids who perished in this blaze belonged to a firefighter who was at another fire at the time this blaze was going on.

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/firefighter-father-of-3-kids-who-died-in-daycare-blaze-was-responding-to-another-call-nearby/ar-AAFHRDs?ocid=spartanntp

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Offline Sanguine

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Re: Pennsylvania childcare centre fire kills 5 children: police
« Reply #3 on: August 12, 2019, 08:41:33 PM »
How awful. 
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Online Applewood

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Re: Pennsylvania childcare centre fire kills 5 children: police
« Reply #4 on: August 13, 2019, 07:30:04 AM »
Morning news locally said there was only one smoke detector in the house -- in the attic.

There was also a clip of an interview with the firefighter father of 3 of the victims.   My heart breaks for him. 

Online PeteS in CA

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Re: Pennsylvania childcare centre fire kills 5 children: police
« Reply #5 on: August 13, 2019, 10:25:44 AM »
Morning news locally said there was only one smoke detector in the house -- in the attic.
...

I'm trying to figure out how that is consistent with this statement in the article I linked above:

Quote
The state Department of Human Services Office of Child Development and Early Learning listed the day care as in compliance with requirements following a Dec. 28, 2018, inspection.

Are smoke detectors in daycare facilities not required by PA? Did the "inspector" not do his/her job?
Journalism is about covering important stories. With a pillow, until they stop moving. - David Burge, Iowahawkblog

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Online Applewood

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Re: Pennsylvania childcare centre fire kills 5 children: police
« Reply #6 on: August 13, 2019, 01:27:23 PM »
@PeteS in CA

I failed to find specific fire codes in PA for daycare centers, but it seems for most facilities in PA, the requirement is one smoke detector for every floor.  Also, this daycare was operated out of an old house.  If I remember correctly, smoke detector and carbon monoxide detectors are required in PA for new construction, but not for old homes.  Since this was a business presumably licensed in PA though, I would say residential requirements don't apply here.

One of the news stories said there were numerous extension cords running underneath the carpet in the living room.  I'm reasonably sure that's a code violation too.

Presumably, the place had been inspected regularly.  if that's so, I would say your guess that the inspector fell down on the job is likely correct. 

I hear that a state lawmaker is calling for an investigation into how this facility passed inspection.   When I find a link to a news article on this subject, I'll post it.




Online Applewood

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Re: Pennsylvania childcare centre fire kills 5 children: police
« Reply #7 on: August 13, 2019, 01:58:51 PM »
Harrisburg fire chief backs lawmakers push for change following fatal Erie fire

Quote
The five victims were children between the ages of 9 months and 8 years. Their caretakers, Harris Family Daycare was licensed. In fact, it passed an inspection, despite only having one working smoke detector — state law requires more.

“It's in the building code, but’s it’s not exactly something the inspectors look for,” said Sen. Dan Laughlin (R-Erie County).

Laughlin wants to change that. He’s calling for a state probe into the deaths and wants to create legislation that requires daycares to verify that they have working smoke and carbon monoxide

https://www.abc27.com/news/harrisburg-fire-chief-backs-lawmakers-push-for-change-following-fatal-erie-fire/

Offline Sanguine

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Re: Pennsylvania childcare centre fire kills 5 children: police
« Reply #8 on: August 13, 2019, 02:01:13 PM »
Harrisburg fire chief backs lawmakers push for change following fatal Erie fire

https://www.abc27.com/news/harrisburg-fire-chief-backs-lawmakers-push-for-change-following-fatal-erie-fire/

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Online Applewood

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Re: Pennsylvania childcare centre fire kills 5 children: police
« Reply #9 on: August 13, 2019, 05:40:39 PM »
Quote
He [Chief Enterline] said Harrisburg requires all licensed daycares to have smoke detectors and sprinklers in every room where a child sleeps, but admits that throughout state and even nationwide, unlicensed daycares can slip through the cracks.

https://www.abc27.com/news/harrisburg-fire-chief-backs-lawmakers-push-for-change-following-fatal-erie-fire/

So is this fire chief saying the daycare may have been unlicensed?  Perhaps someone investigating can  confirm one way or another.  Maybe, by being unlicensed, this daycare was not inspected. 

Online PeteS in CA

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Re: Pennsylvania childcare centre fire kills 5 children: police
« Reply #10 on: August 13, 2019, 05:42:17 PM »
@PeteS in CA
...
One of the news stories said there were numerous extension cords running underneath the carpet in the living room.  I'm reasonably sure that's a code violation too.

Presumably, the place had been inspected regularly.  if that's so, I would say your guess that the inspector fell down on the job is likely correct. 

I hear that a state lawmaker is calling for an investigation into how this facility passed inspection.   When I find a link to a news article on this subject, I'll post it.

Thanks for the link (in your follow-up post). I'm not an expert in codes, but I do work in power electronics. Extension cords under carpets would be a serious fire hazard for at least one of two reasons. If walked on or casters are run over the cord, the insulation will get damaged over time, resulting in exposed wires, with fuel just above. If not subject to foot or rolling casters traffic, the insulation will over time harden and crack, exposing wires.

It's a different matter entirely, but PA bureaucrats showed an insane lack of diligence in the Gosnell "clinic" situation. It would not surprise me if that kind lazy-bureaucrat-culture is more widespread. Whoever approved that daycare center as compliant should be hauled before investigators and maybe even a Grand Jury.
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Offline mountaineer

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Re: Pennsylvania childcare centre fire kills 5 children: police
« Reply #11 on: August 13, 2019, 06:20:14 PM »
That's what I understood from one of the news stories last night - that there was a power strip or extension cord that had a LOT of electrical cords plugged into it.

Hey, any chance we could blame Tom Wolf for this? If Republican politicians can be blamed for every bad thing that happens in their jurisdictions, why not?
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Online PeteS in CA

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Re: Pennsylvania childcare centre fire kills 5 children: police
« Reply #12 on: August 13, 2019, 06:42:19 PM »
That's what I understood from one of the news stories last night - that there was a power strip or extension cord that had a LOT of electrical cords plugged into it.
...

That brings up a couple more hazards:

The obvious one is that the cord could have been overloaded, and if old, the contacts might have gotten spread, leading to poor contact which results in heat.

The less obvious hazard is with power strips that incorporate surge suppression. The most common surge suppression components are Metal Oxide Varistors (MOVs). These have several very good characteristics that make them ubiquitous: they're very inexpensive; they respond very quickly; they can absorb a lot of energy. But they have one very unpleasant characteristic. Every time a surge is absorbed, a little bit of damage is done. Over time and with lots of surges, the voltage at which they start to conduct gradually decreases until they conduct continuously under normal line voltage conditions. This generates heat and the device eventually self-destructs. Power strip case are supposed to be non-flammable, but the same may not be true of objects near the power strip. My personal opinion is that depending on the weather where you live, surge-protected power strips that are in constant use should be replaced every 2-10 years.
Journalism is about covering important stories. With a pillow, until they stop moving. - David Burge, Iowahawkblog

Think of the Press as Democratic Operatives with Bylines and it All Makes Sense - Glenn Reynolds, Instapundit blog

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Online Applewood

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Re: Pennsylvania childcare centre fire kills 5 children: police
« Reply #13 on: August 13, 2019, 07:35:48 PM »
That's what I understood from one of the news stories last night - that there was a power strip or extension cord that had a LOT of electrical cords plugged into it.

Hey, any chance we could blame Tom Wolf for this? If Republican politicians can be blamed for every bad thing that happens in their jurisdictions, why not?

Well, if this home was licensed and subjected to inspections -- jobs like inspectors are more often than not patronage jobs.  The applicant knows someone who knows someone who knows "Mr. Big" (high ranking politician) or someone on his staff who gets him the job.  I've been told that  more often than not, code inspectors really don't know what's in the law, code or regulations.  A number of them can be paid off and perhaps more than a few say they were at X property on such and such a date when they haven't been there for years. 

Maybe whoever inspected this property (or didn't and lied about it) was one of those guys. 

Online Applewood

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Re: Pennsylvania childcare centre fire kills 5 children: police
« Reply #14 on: August 13, 2019, 07:47:01 PM »
@PeteS in CA

And thank you for your helpful posts.  I admit I know little to nothing about electronics and electricity in general.  My house was built in 1961 when I think codes were rather lax back then.  One of the bad things about this house is the lack of electrical outlets.  I guess I should have additional ones installed,  but I haven't gotten around to it.

I don't have the old fashioned extension cords, but I do have a big thing with numerous outlets which has a long cord and plugs into the wall.  It's supposed to protect against power surges, but I'm a bit wary.  I plug my laptop into it, but that's about it.  This afternoon there was a rather nasty thunderstorm here, but I unplugged everything till the storm was over.  Didn't want to take any chances. LOL



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