Published: Mon, August 12, 2019
Global News | By Blake Casey

5 children killed in day care center fire in Pennsylvania

5 children killed in day care center fire in Pennsylvania

The Erie Regional Chamber and Growth Partnership lists the Harris Family Daycare as "a 24 hour, 7 days a week childcare service including holidays".

Four people were injured, including two teenagers who jumped from a second-floor window onto a porch of the home in Erie to escape the flames, Erie Fire Chief Guy Santone told CNN in an interview.

"The deputy (fire chief on the scene) told me he hasn't seen fire blow out of a building like that in a long time", Widomski said. She added that the children had been staying at the day care because their parents were working overnight.

The grandmother of four of the victims, Valerie Lockett-Slupski, said her grandchildren, two boys and two girls, died.

'So we are all at a loss, trying to figure out how this happened, ' Lockett-Slupski was quoted as saying as she stood across from the remains of the daycare center. Investigators remained at the scene Sunday afternoon, with the house blocked off with yellow caution tape and an Erie police officer stationed outside.

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The state Department of Human Services Office of Child Development and Early Learning listed the day care as in compliance with requirements following a December 28, 2018, inspection. The inspection noted cigarette or cigar ashes and butts in the child care space of the home.

Both issues were marked as being corrected.

It is understood the fire started in the living room on the ground floor before it quickly spread.

The woman was flown to University of Pittsburgh Medical Center for treatment, authorities said. Erie police detectives said she is in stable condition.

The fire bureau's two fire inspectors and three Erie Bureau of Police detectives who are trained in fire investigators are working to determine the cause of Sunday morning's fire, which caused heavy damage to the front of the three-story house.

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