Mount Pocono, Monroe County – The Mount Pocono Borough clock marks the time fire melted its gears Friday: 11:40. “It was unbelievable,” said business owner James Diamond. “It was very scary.”
A recreational vehicle towing a car caught fire near the Casino Theatre on Route 611. It rolled backwards and it an SUV. That caused a chain reaction. Witness Susie Weimer recalled, “The explosions were horrendous. The tires [were] blowing out. The gas tanks [were] blowing out. So it was quite a scary thing.”
Flames damaged Diamond’s truck and his jewelry store. He recalled, “The wires were snapping like rubber bands and sparking and then all of a sudden we had no electric and no phones and there just was about four or five explosions and big ones and there were fire balls that were going like two stories in the air over the buildings.”
He and many business owners have melted signs and cracked windows. It will cost thousands of dollars to repair them.
The borough plans to repair the damaged clock and community seating area. Weimer said that is an important downtown gathering spot. She said, “I thought it was wonderful, yeah, you could go get yourself and ice cream and come down here and sit if you wanted to.”
Mount Pocono Mayor Fred Courtright believes the worst of the damage will be cleared in time for Saturday’s Mount Pocono Harvest Festival. He said, “It’s the biggest thing going on in our borough a year and it happens right there where the accident occurred so we’re doing clean up and trying to get that going.”
He expects the people who own the RV will attend the festival. He told Eyewitness News they want to thank the community for showing them so much support. He explained they recently retired and were living in that RV to travel the country. They aren’t sure what to do next. Mayor Courtright hopes to find a way to help them.
The mayor said investigators are still working to figure out what started the fire. Insurance companies are still calculating what it will cost to repair all of the damage.