American firemen, 10 killed in house fire, are their families

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Three children and seven adults have died in a house fire in the US state of Pennsylvania, and a firefighter was called to the scene after seeing that the victims had their own families.

Pennsylvania State Police confirmed the names of six of the victims, but have yet to identify the youngest children, aged five, six and seven.

A criminal investigation has been launched into the cause of the fire.

It is being told that there was a fire in the porch on Friday morning.

Firefighter Harold Baker of Nescopek Volunteer Fire Company told the Associated Press news agency that among the dead were his son, daughter, father-in-law, brother-in-law, sister-in-law, three grandchildren and two other relatives.

He said the three children who died – two boys and one girl – did not live in the house, and were going for summer activities.

The state police have so far identified the victims as Dale Baker, 19, Starr Baker, 22, David Daubert Sr., 79, Shannon Daubert, 42, Laura Dubert, 47, and Marion Slusser, 54.

Harold Baker said that his son Dale followed in his footsteps by joining the fire service.

Police say the bodies were recovered from the destroyed building with the help of police sniffer dogs. According to the police report, the three adults managed to escape safely.

The fire started at approximately 02:30 local time (06:30 GMT) in the rural community of Nescope, 95 miles (150 km) northwest of Philadelphia.

“Firefighters made a valiant attempt to enter the house from behind, but were pushed back by fierce fire and heat,” Pennsylvania State Police Lieutenant Derek Feldsman told reporters Friday.

Mr Baker told the Citizens Voice newspaper in the city of Wilkes-Barre: “When we turned the corner here on Davy [Street] Looking down the street, I knew which house it was.

“I was on the first engine, and when we pulled over, the whole place was completely covered. We tried to get into them.”

Speaking to WNEP-TV, he said: “The kids who were there and my two kids just went to visit their aunt and uncle.

“These are the ones who have the house. They were going there and going to the pool, and all that.”

Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf wrote on Twitter that he was “heartbroken” by the tragedy.

The American Red Cross told CNN they were responding, and helping the displaced.