‘I’m scared for neighbors,’ Sharon fire chief says of growing problem

Concern is growing for neighbors and everyone is encouraged to report any suspicious activity to police


SHARON, Pa. (WYTV) – Firefighters in the city of Sharon dealt with a record number of vacant house fires last year. More than half of those were arson.

A viewer contacted 33 WYTV News over the weekend saying the house next to hers on Columbia Street was on fire again. Sharon Fire Chief Robert Fiscus said it was the third time that same structure caught fire. The problem seems to be growing.

“The last four have been very suspicious in nature. The last three have all been in the same neighborhood,” Fiscus said. “We’ll have periods where we don’t have any. We will go through a period where there is a rash of them, and when you see a spike like that it is usually the same person.”

The concern is growing for neighbors and everyone is encouraged to report any suspicious activity to police.

“I’m scared for neighbors. It’s dangerous,” Fiscus said.

Sharon Police Chief Gerald Smith couldn’t comment on any specific leads in the fires but says they are focusing on a certain area.

“Watch vehicle and foot traffic through your neighborhood always. Not just for arson but for any reason,” said Sharon Police Chief Gerald Smith.

Fiscus says with fires like the one on Columbia Street it is hard to let it burn without causing damage to nearby homes but at the same time, it is becoming more difficult to put out. He is meeting with everyone in the department this week to work on a plan for battling the fires.