A woman died in an early Sunday fire in the Hollsopple area, Somerset County Chief Deputy Coroner Cullen Swank said.
Firefighters from five departments spent the morning working to extinguish the fire at the Thomas Street home after arriving at 6:30 a.m. to find smoke and flames rising from the rear of the residence, Jerome Assistant Chief Herman Lepley said.
“It had a head start on us ... and we had to cut through several layers of roof to really get to it,” Lepley said of the fire.
Swank said an autopsy was planned for Monday to determine the woman’s cause and manner of death. Details were being withheld until it was completed.
Lepley said the fire was first spotted near a rear bedroom area of the home.
Firefighters from Jerome, Conemaugh Township, Hooversville, Richland and Windber all responded and spent more than two hours trying to get the blaze under control.
At 2 p.m., a smaller number of firefighters remained on scene, extinguishing hot spots near the front of the home.
Thomas Street was closed to traffic through the morning so that crews could handle the incident.