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SEPTEMBER 30, 2005

TWO-ALARM STRUCTURE FIRE

Fisher School, Lower Ferry Road
Ewing Township



During the evening of Friday, September 30, 2005, a crew of Lawrence Road Fire Co. volunteers responded mutual aid into Ewing Township for a two-alarm fire at a school.

It was 10:55 p.m. when Mercer County Central Communications Center dispatched all three Ewing Township fire companies – Pennington Road (Station 32), Prospect Heights (Station 31) and West Trenton (Station 33) – for a reported structure fire at Fisher Middle School located at 1325 Lower Ferry Road.

Also dispatched as part of the first alarm for rapid intervention team duties was Lawrence Road’s Rescue 22.

Rescue 22 responded with Capt. Michael Byrd in command, Capt. Shaun Dlabik driving and a crew of Ff. Michael Trimble, Ff. Matt Farletta, Ff. Brian Laue, Ff. Evan Kutzin and Ff. Steve Hodgdon.

Chief Wayne Hannon also responded in Car 22, while Assistant Chief Chris Pangaldi reported to the scene in his own vehicle.

Ewing firefighters arrived to find heavy smoke and fire showing from the roof of the school. A second alarm was immediately requested, resulting in the dispatch to the scene of units from the Slackwood (Station 21) and Lawrenceville (Station 23) fire companies of Lawrence Township, the Pennington Borough Fire Co. (Station 51), and Hamilton Township’s Enterprise Fire Co. (Station 14-2).

Several ladders were raised to the roof of the school and hoselines stretched.

Rescue 22’s crew assembled their equipment and stood by as the RIT. Members of Rescue 22’s crew helped Ewing firefighters stretch a 3-inch hoseline, gated down to a 1.75-inch hoseline, down the school’s long hallways to attack the seat of the fire in a home economics classroom.

Ultimately, the fire (which apparently started in the area of a washer/dryer unit) was quickly knocked down and contained to the home economics classroom. The situation was declared under control after about a half-hour.

A message posted the following morning on the main page of the Ewing Township School District's website read: “Last evening there was a small fire in the FMS Home Ec room. It was quickly contained and controlled. The Home Ec classes will be relocated to another room. The school will be open on Monday, October 3.”

Rescue 22 was back in quarters at Station 22 by 12:45 a.m.

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