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Lehigh Valley

Duplex partially collapses, forces two families to evacuate

Partial building collapse in Allentown

ALLENTOWN, Pa. - Two Allentown families have been displaced after a wall in an adjacent building partially collapsed Friday.

A duplex in the 400 block of Allen Street, the building's left side was uninhabited, but the right side housed a family of three adults and two children on the first floor.

This family has been taken in by a shelter.

The second floor housed a family who was away on vacation.

The left side is where the partial collapse occurred, but its spreading to the right side caused authorities to evacuate the building.

Residents say they heard the collapse starting to happen Thursday.

Fire crews are not sure what caused it, but they suspect a combination of water damage and age.

Captain John Christopher of the Allentown Fire Department said Saturday that engineers would be called in to assess the damage and determine if the homes are structurally sound.

The Red Cross said Sunday they had provided a family of 3 adults and 2 children with food and lodging, in addition to supplying comfort kits for each person and two dolls for the children.

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