Fire in West Vincent Guts House

10:30 p.m. update.  The photos you now see are courtesy of Kimberton Fire Company.  Support your local first responders and remember most of them are volunteers.  They are the people you see in the grocery store, at church, etc.  These people volunteer to put their lives on the line every day to keep us safe. I have a friend who is an EMT. Today’s fire is why everyone should have an emergency plan, which includes what to do in case of a fire. We have fire escape plans and drills in our schools and where we work, but often we don’t have an emergency prepardeness plan for our homes.

Daily Local: West Vincent fire causes $675K in damage (video)

Published: Wednesday, February 22, 2012

WEST VINCENT — A two-story mansion on Beaver Hill Road was destroyed by fire Wednesday morning, although the three residents and two family dogs escaped, officials confirmed.

Kimberton Deputy Fire Chief Dave Kronmuller said the homeowners were home at the time the fire broke out around 5 a.m. They smelled smoke and called for help.

All three of the residents, a man, woman and child, went to the hospital on their own to be checked out for possible smoke inhalation after apparently attempting to put the fire out themselves before fire crews arrived, officials said. The residence was fully involved when an ambulance and the first fire crews arrived at the scene.

Officials said four cats in the residence are still unaccounted for.

Photo courtesy of Kimberton Fire Company

UPDATE:  I am not sure of exact age of house (I think this is it on Zillow and further research indicates both a new house and an old house circa 1880 on the property) and a person in the area says they think easily over a million as far as a loss, but that is just a guess based on comparables.  I will update and/or correct as information reaches me.  I am told the fire marshal is on scene and as of yet no cause has been determined.  The cause is probably nothing nefarious, as it just doesn’t take much in winter to make a house go up – electrical issues, heater issues, chimney issues – pick something.  I feel badly for the people who lost their home. Another source tells me they spoke with the family, who are thankfully all o.k. I think there were a crazy amount of fire trucks who responded to this, and everyone should also remember the first responders, who are once you get outside of big cities, mostly volunteers.

The home has a cool local history (every old house has a story):

That old house was on the property when current owners bought it. The built a new huge house it the woods to the rear of the little one. The entire property was known as “Camp Kelton Woods”, a former girl scout owned camp in the 50’s and 60’s. The camp administrator Allen Houck lived in the little house, and also owned the Birchrunville General Store where his wife was postmaster for years. When the camp was sold, the Houcks had to leave, and current owners bought the entire property. They use the old house as a tennant or in-law property, and built the huge house for themselves. They might both have the same street address. Not sure of that.


Wow. This is awful. I do not see anything on The Daily Local about this yet. Anyone know anything? Was this an old house? New house? House under any kind of construction or reconstruction?

CBS Philly:

2-Alarm Fire Consumes Mansion In Chester County

February 22, 2012 7:20 AM By Steve Beck, Al Novack

WEST VINCENT TOWNSHIP, Pa. (CBS)– A two-alarm fire gutted a three-story mansion in Chester County early Wednesday morning.

The fire started at about 5 a.m. inside a home in the 2300 block of Beaver Hill Road in West Vincent Township.

Chopper 3 HD was over the scene of the fire where firefighters battled the blaze that essentially consumed the entire home.