LACKAWANNA, NY-- The evacuation order in Lackawanna will be lifted at 2pm according to Lackawanna Mayor Geoffrey Szymanski.
Demolition began Thursday night at the Lackawanna former Bethlehem Steel site after a massive fire forced neighborhoods around the facility to evacuate Thursday afternoon.
The Mayor of Lackawanna ordered evacuations north of the Bethlehem fire scene based on test results of particulate matter and smoke plume. Residents affected were notified by door to door and reverse 911.
The City of Lackawanna has also issued a state of emergency.
The city posted this message on their Facebook page:
This is Lackawanna mayor Geoff Szymanski with an important community conversation
As mayor of the City of Lackawanna, I am declaring a State of Emergency for the city of Lackawanna. Bethlehem Park residents are to be evacuated from their homes.
If Bethlehem Park residents can stay with loved ones, not in Bethlehem Park, please go there. For those who need a warming shelter, we are asking people to please move to the Senior Center or the High School. For those residents who don’t have the capacity to drive, we will be supplying buses to help make the temporary move. Please bring only bare essentials, blankets. Etc. no pets. If you are aware of any person who has special needs for this move, please call the Lackawanna Police Department Please turn you thermostats down to a reasonable level. If you need a ride, please call 822-4900
All residents are now being moved to Lackawanna High School. The Red Cross volunteers will have cots and blankets, food, water and other support available. The Salvation Army will be serving dinner at approximately 5pm Thursday evening.
NFTA buses are on standby in the area of the evacuations to assist those who do not have transportation.
County Health officials have been monitoring the air quality shortly after a massive fire broke out at the former Bethlehem site Wednesday morning.
On Thursday, officials advised residents to avoid smoke as much as possible, according to Gale Burstein, Erie County Health Commissioner.