Two Pennsylvania firefighters have been killed and two others injured in the partial collapse of a former piano factory, which had been heavily damaged in a fire.
Ivan Flanscha, 50, and Zachary Anthony, 29, died Thursday at York Hospital in York, Pennsylvania, officials say.
Two other firefighters are being treated for injuries that are not believed to be life-threatening.
Part of the four-story building fell on the firefighters as they were looking for hot spots and investigating the cause of a fire that broke out Wednesday at the Weaver Organ and Piano factory.
Two firefighters were killed and another two were injured when part of a four-story building collapsed on Thursday in Pennsylvania. Pictured are emergency personnel moving one injured firefighter from the rubble
The Weaver Organ and Piano factory in York, Pennsylvania, caught fire on Wednesday evening. On Thursday, firefighters were inspecting the area for hot spots when part of the building collapsed
The factory – which was being converted into residential units – collapsed before 4pm on Thursday after a fire took place the previous day.
Part of the building initially fell around 6pm on Wednesday after the fire started. Crews worked into the night to fight the blaze.
Then during an a routine investigation for hot spots, four firefighters were trapped under the rubble as part of the four-story building came down.
York Mayor Michael Helfrich called it ‘a tragic day in York’s history’ during a press conference after the building collapsed.
The death of the two firefighters brought the city’s number to 13 people total who have lost their lives in the line of duty, according to the York Daily Record.
Flanscha was a 20-year veteran with the fire department and won ‘Firefighter of the Year’, among other awards for his service.
The mayor also expressed his distraught for the loss of Anthony during the press conference who he considered to be a personal friend.
Anthony had been with the fire department since August 2010.
‘This is the worst day of my career,’ Helfrich said during the press conference. ‘It is a dark day (for the York fire department).’
Autopsies are scheduled for Anthony and Flanscha on Friday at Lehigh Valley Hospital.
The other two firefighters in the hospital are doing OK and expected to recover from their injuries.
Rescue personnel tend to a fellow firefighter after a wall collapse at the scene of a fire in York. Ivan Flanscha, 50, and Zachary Anthony, 29, died Thursday at York Hospital after the building came down
A firefighter walks away from where EMS work on a fellow responder who was injured when a wall collapsed at the scene of a fire. Crews worked through the night on Wednesday to put out the blaze
Mayor Michael Helfrich called it ‘a tragic day in York’s history’ after two firefighters were killed. A total of 13 firefighters for the city have died in the line of duty