Local/State

Haunted attraction in Bucks Co. burns down

Thursday, August 09, 2012

A haunted attraction at a Bucks County swim club has burned down.

The fire was reported just after 1:00 p.m. Wednesday at the Phoenix Swim Club at 301 West Bristol Road in Lower Southampton.

Firefighters say, when they arrived, they found that the haunted attraction used for Halloween was fully engulfed in flames.

The view from Chopper 6 HD showed a decorative skeleton still hanging on a piece of the building with smoldering rubble all around.

The fire department was able to get the fire under control after about half an hour.

The owner of the Valley of Fear in Feasterville says it happened as some of his employees were getting the two haunted houses ready for the up-coming season.

"A spark went off from some equipment they were working with, and by the time they got the fire extinguisher, the extinguisher couldn't put it out and the fire just spread quickly," explained owner Tom Yaeger.

The fire was able to spread as quickly as it did because these attractions were filled with props made of wood and burlap.

The Haunted Pirate Ship, seen in these photos, suffered the worst of it. The charred mast is just about all that remains.

A short time after fire crews doused the flames, Valley of Fear employees gathered to assess the damage, and hope for the best.

"Every year it has been a really fun place to work, you meet a lot of great people, you have a lot of great memories, and when you see something like this it hits you," said Chris Maher.

The good news is that despite the set-back, the Valley of Fear will re-open for the season on time on September 28th.

"We'll probably have one haunted house instead of two," Yaegel said. "But it will be good, and the other two attractions, the hayride and the haunted walk will be expanded."

Two responding firefighters were treated for heat exhaustion, but both are expected to fully recover.

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Tags:
pennsylvania, bucks county, fire, halloween, local/state, walter perez
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