A firefighter fears up to 10 of his loved ones died in a house fire in Pennsylvania.
The fire at the single-family home in the town of Nescopeck was reported around 2.30am on Friday after what neighbors described as a loud explosion.
Three victims have been found so far and authorities say around seven people are still missing.
Harold Baker told the Citizens’ Voice newspaper that 10 victims of his family should eventually be found – his son, daughter, father-in-law, brother-in-law, sister-in-law, three grandchildren and two other relatives.
He said 14 people lived in the house, one of whom was delivering newspapers at the time.
The initial call to emergency services was for a nearby property, but Mr Baker realized it was his family’s residence as the fire engine approached.
“When we turned the corner here on Dewey (street), I knew straight away which house it was just by looking down the street,” he told Citizens’ Voice.
“I was on the first engine, and when we pulled up the whole place was completely involved. We tried to join them.”
Mr. Baker was removed from his position because of his relationship with the victims.
Neighbors reported seeing the porch consumed by flames after hearing the sound of the explosion.
Some said they also heard a young man shouting outside the house: “They are all dead”.
A criminal investigation is underway, police said, with officers interviewing survivors.