Westmont house fire ruled accidental; cause not yet determined

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Sep. 23—JOHNSTOWN, Pa. — Firefighters are searching for the cause of Thursday's house fire in Westmont Borough that started at 5 a.m. in the 1100 block of Luzerne Street Extension, authorities said.

Nobody was home at the time. The property was recently sold, and the new owners had not moved in, West Hills fire Chief Rob Tauber said.

The fire is being ruled accidental, but what started the blaze is still being determined, he said.

The fire started in the back of the house on the second floor of the three-story structure.

"It was going pretty good when we got here," Tauber said.

Johnstown police Capt. Michael Plunkard, who lives next door, said he was awoken by a West Hills police officer banging on the door.

"They were trying to figure out who lived there," he said.

Fire crews did a good job knocking out the flames, Tauber said.

No injuries were reported. Fire crews from Southmont, Middle Taylor, West Taylor, Richland, Upper Yoder, Cover Hill and Johnstown were called out.

Hilltop EMS, 7th Ward EMS and a DART medic from Conemaugh Memorial Medical Center were also called to the scene.

Firefighters stayed at the scene throughout the morning searching for hot spots.