Over 100 Firefighters from Berks, Lehigh and Montgomery Counties responded to a 3 alarm fire in Hereford Township Saturday morning at the Mituo Village, Amitabha Buddhist Society of Philadelphia.
At 10:12am, firefighters were dispatched to the 300 block of Conrad Road for reports of a building on fire. A column of smoke could be seen from miles away. The incident quickly grew to 3 alarms before being brought under control several hours later.
The fire occurred in the dormitory building of Mituo Village, adjacent to the temple. At the time of the fire, the dormitory building was unoccupied, and the adjacent temple was occupied. Everyone was able to escape without injuries prior to the fire department’s arrival.
One firefighter was transported from the scene to the hospital for a medical emergency and another firefighter was treated on scene. No civilians were injured.
State Police Fire Marshal Corey Heimbach concluded the investigation Monday determining the fire to be accidental. The report from the Fire Marshal also states the origin of the fire was outside of the dormitory, caused by fireplace debris.
The dormitory building is approximately 6,000 square feet and damage is estimated to be over $1 million dollars.
Due to no fire hydrants in the area, water was brought in by tankers. An estimated 60,000 gallons of water was shuttled to the scene by tankers from a nearby farmer’s pond.