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NOVEMBER 10, 2005


Route 1 Freeway South, Lawrence Township

During the morning of Thursday, November 10, 2005, members of Lawrence Road Fire Co. were among the emergency personnel who responded to an overturned tractor-trailer on the Route 1 Freeway.

The accident occurred about 7:10 a.m. on the southbound side of the Route 1 Freeway, just south of where Route 1 (Brunswick Pike) splits into the freeway and Business Route 1.

The tractor-trailer, which was entirely filled with trash, was on its way to a landfill in Pennsylvania, according to police.

The driver, a 47-year-old man from Brooklyn, N.Y., told police that he lost control of the tractor-trailer after he swerved to avoid a car that him cut off.

The big rig flipped onto its driverís side, blocking both southbound lanes and the shoulder and spilling its cargo of trash all over the road.

Because it was unclear if there was entrapment, a full rescue assignment was dispatched. Responding were Rescue 21 and Snorkel 21 from Slackwood Fire Co., Rescue 22 from Lawrence Road Fire Co., and Rescue 23 from Lawrenceville Fire Co., along with EMS units.

Rescue 22 was commanded by Assistant Chief Chris Pangaldi, driven by Ff. Joseph Dlabik Sr., and crewed by Capt. Michael Ratcliffe, Ff. Charles Commini, Ff. Evan Kutzin, Ff. Brian Laue, Ff. Jarred Pierson, and Ff. Joseph Dlabik Jr.

Firefighters arrived to find that the driver was not injured and had managed to free himself from the wreckage.

A 1.75-inch hoseline from Rescue 22 was stretched into a stand by position as firefighters used pads, booms, and absorbent material to contain fluids spilled from the flipped tractor and to prevent the fluids from entering a nearby storm sewer.

Once fluids were contained, Rescue 23 was released from the scene. Rescue 22 remained on scene with Slackwood firefighters until about 8:30 a.m. Rescue 22 was released once an engine from Slackwood reported to the scene.

Slackwood firefighters remained on location throughout the day while the spilled trash was cleaned up and heavy duty wreckers were used to upright the tractor-trailer.

The road was finally reopened in time for the evening rush hour.

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