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LAWRENCE ROAD FIRE CO.


NOTEWORTHY INCIDENTS
MAY 2008

During the month of May 2008, Lawrence Road Fire Co. volunteers responded to a total of 52 emergency calls. Below are details and photographs from some of the more noteworthy alarms and other non-emergency fire company activities that took place during the month.



MOTOR VEHICLE ACCIDENT WITH ENTRAPMENT
Date & Time: Friday, May 2, 2008 – 4:58 p.m.
Location: Interstate 95 Northbound, South of Route 1
Details: Lawrenceville Fire Co. (Station 23), Rescue 22 from Lawrence Road Fire Co., and Rescue 21 from Slackwood Fire Co. were dispatched on Box 23-50 at 4:58 p.m. for a reported motor vehicle accident with entrapment. Rescue 22 arrived on scene at 5:05 p.m., followed by Rescue 21 and Rescue 23 at 5:07 p.m. Firefighters discovered that a car that had been traveling southbound on I-95 had veered across the highway’s grass median, entered the northbound lanes and slammed head-on into two northbound vehicles. The female driver of the southbound car was injured and trapped inside the wreckage. A 1.75-inch hoseline was stretched from Rescue 22 and firefighters stabilized the auto. Rescue 22’s crew then cut away the driver’s door and worked with the other crews to cut away part of the roof and fold it back out of the way to allow emergency medical personnel access to the trapped woman. The extrication was completed by 5:19 p.m. The injured woman was then transported by ambulance to the trauma unit at Capital Health System at Fuld hospital in Trenton, where she was reportedly treated for injuries to her back and face. The drivers of the other two vehicles involved in the accident were not hurt. Rescue 22 was back in quarters by 5:41 p.m.
Responding LRFC Personnel
Rescue 22
Officer: Lt. Joseph Dlabik Jr. Driver: Ff. Ryan Dlabik
Crew: Capt. Michael Byrd Crew: Lt. Richard Laird III
Crew: Ff. Keith Kent Crew: Ff. Charles Commini Jr.
Car 22-1
Deputy Chief John Fleming

Photo copyright (c) 2008 by Ryan Dlabik
For additional photos from this incident, click here




STRUCTURE FIRE
Date & Time: Tuesday, May 6, 2008 – 3:53 p.m.
Location: 4 Allegheny Avenue, Lawrence Township, N.J.
Details: A roofing contractor was putting the finishing touches on a new roof when he accidentally started a raging fire that destroyed the attic and top floor of the house at 4 Allegheny Avenue. The contractor was reportedly using a torch to heat up material to seal a vent near the peak of the two-story home's roof when he inadvertently ignited insulation in the attic. The man allegedly tried to fight the growing blaze on his own using a portable extinguisher and a garden hose for as much as 10 minutes before the homeowner called 911. It was 3:53 p.m. when Mercer County Central transmitted Box 21-10 and dispatched the Slackwood (Station 21), Lawrence Road (Station 22) and Lawrenceville (Station 23) fire companies. At 3:55 p.m. Slackwood Assistant Chief Michael Oakley arrived on scene and reported that he had heavy smoke pushing from the roof. Based on that report, an additional engine company (Engine 14-4 from Enterprise Fire Co. of Hamilton Township) was dispatched to the scene. First-due Engine 21-1 and Snorkel 21 arrived at 4 p.m. Engine 21-1’s crew wrapped the hydrant at the corner of Allegheny Avenue and Brunswick Pike and laid a supply line up to the fire building. Engine 22 arrived at 4:01 p.m. and connected to the hydrant to feed the supply line. Ladder Tower 23 arrived at 4:03 p.m. and took a position on Side D in the lot of the business next-door. Ladder Tower 23’s aerial was eventually raised to the roof. Engine 14-4 arrived at 4:06 p.m., followed by Rescue 21 at 4:09 p.m., and Rescue 22 at 4:11 p.m. Firefighters attempted an interior attack with multiple 1.75-inch hoselines, but their efforts were hampered by limited access to the attic and a excessive amount of items stored on the second floor. Ground ladders were thrown and two crews were sent to the roof with saws to cut ventilation holes. With interior crews still trying to pull the ceiling to reach the attic and conditions rapidly deteriorating, Slackwood Chief Robert Santello ordered all personnel to evacuate the building at 4:13 p.m. Just minutes later the entire second floor was consumed by heavy fire. Rescue 32 from Ewing Township’s Pennington Road Fire Co. was dispatched at 4:09 p.m. and arrived on scene at 4:19 p.m. Interior operations resumed after the bulk of the visible fire was knocked down through the use of exterior hoselines. The blaze was officially declared under control at 4:45 p.m. At 5:21 p.m. Engine 33 from Ewing’s West Trenton Fire Co. was special-called to the scene to assist with overhaul operations. Engine 33 arrived at 5:26 p.m.k Ambulance crews from Lawrence Emergency Medical Service and a rehab unit from Trenton Emergency Medical Service assisted at the scene by monitoring firefighters’ conditions and keeping everyone safe. As a result, no injuries were reported. Rescue 22’s cascade system was used to refill 10 SCBA bottles on location. Rescue 22 was released at 6:03 p.m. and was back in quarters by 6:13 p.m. Engine 22, meanwhile, remain on scene until 6:48 p.m. to help complete overhaul operations. Engine 22 returned to Station 22 by 6:52 p.m.
Responding LRFC Personnel
Engine 22
Officer: Lt. Joseph Dlabik Jr. Driver: Ff. Charles Commini Sr.
Crew: Capt. Michael Byrd Crew: Ff. Ryan Dlabik
Crew: Ff. Keith Kent Crew: Ff. C.J. Decello
Rescue 22
Officer: Ff. Charles Commini Jr. Driver: Ff. Joseph Dlabik Sr.
Crew: Ff. Michael Guala  
Car 22-1
Deputy Chief John Fleming

Photo copyright (c) 2008 by Michael Ratcliffe
For additional photos from this incident, click here




SPECIAL ASSIGNMENT
Date & Time: Tuesday, May 6, 2008
Location: Operation Dreamlift, Trenton-Mercer Airport, Ewing Township, N.J.
Details: A crew of Lawrence Road Fire Co. volunteers took part in the Sunshine Foundation’s annual “Operation Dreamlift” in which dozens of chronically- and terminally-ill children were flown to Florida free of charge for an afternoon of fun at Disney World. Rescue 22 responded to the airport during the morning to see the children off on their flight. Lt. Richard Laird III was in command, Ff. Matthew Farletta drove, and the crew consisted of Capt. Michael Byrd, Ff. Sean Ryan, Ff. Keith Kent, Ff. Michael Guala, and C.J. Decello. At 7:30 a.m., during the event, Ewing firefighters were dispatched to an activated fire alarm at 1560 North Olden Avenue. When another fire alarm activation was reported at 7:33 a.m. at 1001 Spruce Street, Prospect Heights Fire Chief Jeff Lenarski special-called Rescue 22 to respond to Spruce Street. As it turned out, firefighters quickly discovered that the address on North Olden Avenue and the address on Spruce Street were the same building and that the fire alarm has been accidentally set off by workers.




STRUCTURE FIRE
Date & Time: Friday, May 9, 2008 – 10:22 p.m.
Location: Little Kids College, 1558 Brunswick Pike, Lawrence Township, N.J.
Details: All three Lawrence Township fire companies were dispatched for a possible structure fire after a neighbor called 911 and reported hearing an arcing noise and seeing flames inside Little Kids College. Slackwood Ff. Todd Lenarski and township police officers arrived and confirmed a working fire at the rear of the building. As a result, Ladder 14 and Engine 14-2 from the Hamilton and Enterprise fire companies of Hamilton Township were dispatched as the balance of the first alarm. Engine 21-1 arrived on the scene at 10:27 p.m. At that time a small body of fire inside an electrical room was visible through a doorway. Engine 21-1’s crew stretched a 1.75-inch hoseline, forced entry and quickly knocked down the fire before it could spread. By 10:34 p.m., Slackwood Chief Robert Santello placed the fire under control and recalled all apparatus with the exception of Engine 21-1, Snorkel 21 and Engine 22. Engine 22 stood by on scene as the rapid intervention team until being recalled. Engine 22 was back in quarters by 10:57 p.m.
Responding LRFC Personnel
Engine 22
Officer: Capt. Edward Kitchen Driver: Ff. Charles Commini Sr.
Crew: Lt. Richard Laird III Crew: Ff. Keith Kent
Crew: Ff. Michael Guala Crew: Ff. Theresa Androvett
Telesquirt 22
Officer: Lt. Evan Kutzin Driver: Ff. Joseph Dlabik Sr.
Crew: Ff. Martin Burch Crew: Ff. Christine Toussaint
Car 22
Chief Richard Farletta

Photo copyright (c) 2008 by Michael Ratcliffe




STRUCTURE FIRE
Date & Time: Saturday, May 10, 2008 – 7:23 p.m.
Location: 21 Rickard Court, Lawrence Township, N.J.
Details: At 7:23 p.m. the Lawrenceville (Station 23), Lawrence Road (Station 22), Slackwood (Station 21) and Mercerville (Station 12) fire companies were dispatched by Mercer County Central on Box 23-60 for a reported structure fire in the Lawrence Square Village complex. Firefighters arrived to find heavy smoke showing from the third floor of a building on Rickard Court. A 1.75-inch hoseline was stretched from first-arriving Engine 12 and firefighters quickly knocked down the fire, which had started in a clothes dryer and spread to the rest of the laundry room in Apartment 21. The fire was declared under control at 7:38 p.m. Engine 22’s crew helped Engine 12’s crew with the initial entry and attack and with subsequent overhaul operations, while Rescue 22’s crew helped vent the heavy smoke condition that filled the apartment. Apparatus that operated on scene included: Telesquirt 23, Engine 22, Rescue 22, Snorkel 21, Engine 21, and Engine 12. All Station 22 apparatus and manpower were back in quarters by 8:22 p.m.
Responding LRFC Personnel
Engine 22
Officer: Capt. Edward Kitchen Driver: Ff. Shaun Dlabik
Crew: Capt. Michael Byrd Crew: Lt. Joseph Dlabik
Crew: Ff. Christine Toussaint Crew: Ff. Keith Kent
Rescue 22
Officer: Capt. Ed Budzinski Driver: Ff. Joseph Dlabik Sr.
Crew: Ff. Ryan Dlabik Crew: Ff. Chris Dlabik
Crew: Ff. Matthew Farletta  




COVER ASSIGNMENT
Date & Time: Sunday, May 11, 2008 – 1:21 a.m.
Location: Engine Co. #1, 460 Calhoun Street, City of Trenton, N.J.
Details: At 1:21 a.m. Mercer County Central dispatched Lawrence Road Fire Co. with a request for Rescue 22 to relocate to the Calhoun Street firehouse in Trenton to cover Engine 1.
At the time, Trenton firefighters were busy battling a two-alarm structure fire in the 200 block of Walnut Avenue. Sadly, a 10-year-old girl was killed in the blaze, which authorities later determined was a case of arson. Rescue 22 responded at 1:26 a.m. and arrived at the Calhoun Street station at 1:31 a.m. Rescue 22 stood by there, without receiving any emergency assignments, until being recalled at 3:59 a.m. Rescue 22 was back in quarters at Station 22 by 4:07 a.m.
Responding LRFC Personnel
Rescue 22
Officer: Lt. Richard Laird III Driver: Ff. Shaun Dlabik
Crew: Lt. Joseph Dlabik Jr. Crew: Ff. Keith Kent
Crew: Ff. Matthew Farletta Crew: Ff. Ryan Dlabik




COVER ASSIGNMENT
Date & Time: Monday, May 19, 2008 – 5:40 p.m.
Location: Princeton Junction Fire Co. (Station 44), 245 Clarksville Rd, West Windsor, N.J.
Details: Lawrence Road’s Engine 22 was dispatched at 5:40 p.m. to relocate to the Princeton Junction firehouse. At the time, West Windsor Township firefighters were busy fighting a two-alarm fire at 51 Remington Circle. The fire destroyed a three-car garage and badly damaged part of the large house to which it was attached. Lawrenceville Fire Co. and other fire companies from East Windsor, Hightstown, Plainsboro, Hamilton and Robbinsville helped battle the fire. Lawrence Road President James Yates, in his capacity as West Windsor Emergency Services Director 45, was hurt when a large piece of sheetrock fell onto him from the ceiling in the foyer of the house. A mayday was called as a precaution and Yates was carried from the house by the rapid intervention team. He and another injured firefighter were treated at University Medical Center at Princeton and later released. Engine 22 responded at 5:45 p.m. and arrived at Station 44 by 5:55 p.m. Engine 22 stood by there with Ladder 49 from Plainsboro without receiving any emergency assignments. Engine 22 was recalled at 7:50 p.m. and was back in quarters at Station 22 by 8:03 p.m.
Responding LRFC Personnel
Engine 22
Officer: Capt. Edward Kitchen Driver: Ff. Andrew Fosina
Crew: Capt. Michael Byrd Crew: Lt. Richard Laird III
Crew: Ff. Keith Kent Crew: Ff. Shaun Dlabik




HAZARDOUS MATERIALS DRILL
Date & Time: Tuesday, May 20, 2008 – 7:30 a.m.
Location: Rider University, 2083 Lawrence Road, Lawrence Township, N.J.
Details: Members of Lawrence Road Fire Co. took part in a training exercise that simulated a chlorine spill inside the science building on the Rider University campus. As part of the scenario, a teacher and three students were exposed after a tank of liquid chlorine ruptured. The “victims” all complained of burning eyes and respiratory problems and needed to be decontaminated. Joining Rescue 22 for the drill were Slackwood’s Snorkel 21, Lawrenceville’s Rescue 23, the Trenton Fire Department’s Hazardous Materials Task Force, Lawrence and Ewing ambulance crews, a rehab unit from Trenton Emergency Medical Service, Lawrence police, Lawrence emergency management officials, and Rider University security. The exercise lasted until about 9:30 a.m.
Responding LRFC Personnel
Rescue 22
Officer: Lt. Richard Laird III Driver: Paid Driver Robert Santello
Crew: Capt. Michael Byrd Crew: Ff. Sean Ryan
Crew: Ff. Keith Kent  

Photo copyright (c) 2008 by Lawrence Road Fire Co.
For additional photos from this incident, click here




MOTOR VEHICLE ACCIDENT WITH ENTRAPMENT
Date & Time: Wednesday, May 21, 2008 – 7:01 p.m.
Location: Province Line Road, south of Rosedale Road, Princeton Township, N.J.
Details: At 7:01 p.m. Lawrenceville Fire Co. (Station 23), Rescue 22 from Lawrence Road, and Rescue 21 from Slackwood were dispatched by Mercer County Central to the area of Province Line Road and Princeton Pike for a motor vehicle accident with possible entrapment. As firefighters were responding, Mercer County Central revised the location of the accident to Province Line Road between Rosedale Road and Carson Road. As that area of Province Line Road forms the border between Lawrence and Princeton townships, units from Princeton were dispatched as a precaution. At 7:05 p.m. Lawrenceville Deputy Chief Dave Burns arrived on scene to find that a car had slid off the road in such a way that its driver’s side slammed into a tree on the Princeton Township side of Province Line Road. The driver, a 32-year-old Trenton man, was trapped in the wreckage and was unconscious but breathing. Rescue 23 arrived at 9:07 p.m., followed by Rescue 22 at 9:10 p.m. and Rescue 21 at 9:12 p.m. All three crews went to work to cut away the car’s A and B posts and fold back the roof to allow EMS personnel access to the driver. The man was extricated by 7:25 p.m. and was rushed by ambulance to Capital Health System at Fuld hospital in Trenton to be treated for head, chest and abdominal injuries. Rescue 22 cleared the scene at 7:30 p.m. and was in quarters by 7:41 p.m.
Responding LRFC Personnel
Rescue 22
Officer: Lt. Joseph Dlabik Jr. Driver: Ff. Shaun Dlabik
Crew: Ff. Sean Ryan Crew: Ff. Steven Hodgdon
Crew: Ff. Michael Guala Crew: Ff. Keith Kent
Crew: Ff. Chris Dlabik  

Photo copyright (c) 2008 by Shaun Dlabik
For additional photos from this incident, click here




COVER ASSIGNMENT
Date & Time: Sunday, May 25, 2008 – 12:51 p.m.
Location: Princeton Junction Fire Co. (Station 44), 245 Clarksville Rd, West Windsor, N.J.
Details: Lawrence Road Fire Co. was dispatched at 12:51 p.m. by Mercer County Central with a request for Engine 22 to relocate to the Princeton Junction firehouse. At the time, West Windsor Township and mutual aid firefighters were busy fighting a two-alarm house fire on Washington Road. Engine 22 responded at 12:54 p.m. and arrived at Station 44 by 1:04 p.m. Engine 22 stood by there, along with Hightstown’s Ladder 41, until being recalled at 2:19 p.m. No emergency assignments were received during the standby. Engine 22 was back in quarters at Station 22 by 2:32 p.m.
Responding LRFC Personnel
Engine 22
Officer: Lt. Joseph Dlabik Jr. Driver: Ff. Shaun Dlabik
Crew: Capt. Michael Byrd Crew: Ff. Keith Kent
Crew: Ff. Sean Ryan Crew: Ff. Steven Hodgdon




STRUCTURE FIRE
Date & Time: Tuesday, May 27, 2008 – 10:23 a.m.
Location: Kooltronic Inc., 30 Hopewell-Pennington Road, Hopewell Township, N.J.
Details: At 10:07 a.m. crews from the Pennington Borough (Station 51) and Hopewell Borough (Station 52) fire companies were dispatched to the Kooltronic facility for a possible fire. Firefighters arrived on scene by 10:13 a.m. and, after a brief investigation, confirmed that there was some kind of fire in the building. As a result, Mercer County Central dispatched Lawrence Road’s Rescue 22, Lawrenceville’s Telesquirt 23 and the rest of Box 51-20’s full first alarm at 10:23 a.m. Rescue 22 responded at 10:27 a.m. Pennington and Hopewell firefighters soon discovered that the blaze was contained to a kiln and had been mostly knocked down by an employee using a portable extinguisher. By 10:36 a.m. the fire was under control and all still-responding units were recalled with the exception of Rescue 22. Rescue 22’s crew arrived on scene at 10:40 a.m. and stood by as the rapid intervention team until being recalled at 11:17 a.m. Rescue 22 was back in quarters by 11:36 a.m.
Responding LRFC Personnel
Rescue 22
Officer: Capt. Edward Kitchen Driver: Paid Driver Robert Santello
Crew: Capt. Michael Byrd Crew: Ff. Michael Guala
Crew: Ff. Keith Kent Crew: Ff. Steven Hodgdon
Crew: Ff. Sean Ryan  




STRUCTURE FIRE
Date & Time: Wednesday, May 28, 2008 – 9:14 a.m.
Location: Homasote Co., 900 Lower Ferry Road, Ewing Township, N.J.
Details: At 9:14 a.m. crews from the West Trenton (Station 33), Pennington Road (Station 32) and Prospect Heights (Station 31) fire companies were dispatched to Homasote for a possible fire. At 9:18 a.m. Engine 33 arrived on scene and reported there was smoke showing from the roof of the building. As a result, Mercer County Central at 9:19 a.m. retoned all three Ewing fire companies for a working fire and dispatched Lawrence Road’s Rescue 22 as the rapid intervention team. Rescue 22 arrived at 9:34 a.m. Rescue 22’s crew was soon relieved of RIT responsibilities and was sent up to the roof to help Ladder Tower 31’s crew pull up plywood decking to check for fire extension. The blaze was declared under control at 9:44 a.m. Apparatus that operated at the scene included: Engine 33, Engine 33-1, Engine 32, Rescue 32, Ladder Tower 31, and Rescue 22. All units cleared the scene at 10:03 a.m. and Rescue 22 was back in quarters by 10:17 a.m.
Responding LRFC Personnel
Rescue 22
Officer: Lt. Joseph Dlabik Jr. Driver: Ff. Charles Commini Sr.
Crew: Capt. Michael Byrd Crew: Ff. Matthew Farletta
Crew: Ff. Steven Hodgdon Crew: Ff. Keith Kent




TWO-ALARM STRUCTURE FIRE
Date & Time: Saturday, May 31, 2008 – 12:35 p.m.
Location: Lawrenceville Gardens, Building E, 180 Franklin Corner Road, Lawrence Twp, N.J.
Details: All three Lawrence Township fire companies were dispatched at 12:35 p.m. for a structure fire at the Lawrenceville Gardens apartment complex. Township police officers arrived on scene within minutes and reported a working fire, with bystanders reporting that a child was possibly trapped on the second floor of the fire building. Police officers attempted to enter the fire apartment but were driven back by fire and smoke. The officers then evacuated residents from the other apartments in the 12-unit building. At 12:38 p.m. Lawrenceville Fire Co. Assistant Chief Gary Wasko arrived on scene and reported heavy smoke pushing the second floor and roof of Building E with heavy fire showing inside the second-floor apartment where the child was reported to be. Lawrence Road’s Engine 22 and Slackwood’s Snorkel 21 arrived on scene at 12:41 p.m. and immediately stretched a 1.75-inch hoseline from Engine 22 to mount an aggressive interior attack and primary search. Telesquirt 23 arrived at 12:42 p.m. and laid a supply line out to a hydrant on Franklin Corner Road. Wasko requested a second alarm at 12:42 p.m., prompting Mercer County Central to dispatch Mercerville’s Engine 12-1, Princeton’s Squirt 63, Pennington Borough’s Engine 51, Princeton Junction’s Ladder Tower 44, and Enterprise’s Special Services 14. Firefighters encountered tremendous heat and endured collapsing ceilings as they battled the flames and searched for the “trapped” child. Ultimately, all searches proved negative. It was later learned that the child was not at home and was found safe elsewhere. Two firefighters were transported by ambulance to Capital Health System at Fuld hospital in Trenton for treatment of injuries suffered while battling the fire. Lawrence Road Ff. Keith Kent suffered burns to his hands, while Slackwood Ff. Chris Laird suffered back injuries when ceiling material collapsed on him. Both were released from the hospital and receiving treatment. Several other firefighters were treated on the scene for exhaustion and other minor injuries. Emergency medical services were provided on scene by Lawrence, Trenton, West Windsor and Capital Health System squads. The blaze was declared under control at 1:20 p.m., however fire crews remained on scene for several more hours overhauling and aiding investigators. At 2 p.m. Prospect Height’s Engine 31-1 (which had relocated into Lawrence Township for coverage) was special-called to the scene to help with overhaul. Ultimately, the apartment where the fire started was gutted, while three other apartments were damaged by fire, smoke or water. Investigators eventually concluded that the fire was probably started by an electrical cord pinched behind a bedroom dresser. Apparatus that operated on scene included: Telesquirt 23, Ladder Tower 23, Rescue 23, Engine 22, Rescue 22, Snorkel 21, Engine 21, Engine 12-1, Special Services 14, Engine 31-1, Ladder Tower 44, Engine 51, Squirt 63, Rehab 174 (Trenton EMS). All Lawrence Road units were back in quarters by 3:21 p.m.
Responding LRFC Personnel
Engine 22
Officer: Lt. Joseph Dlabik Jr. Driver: Ff. Shaun Dlabik
Crew: Capt. Michael Byrd Crew: Ff. Sean Ryan
Crew: Ff. Keith Kent Crew: Ff. Matthew Farletta
Rescue 22
Officer: Ff. Christine Toussaint Driver: Ff. Ryan Dlabik
Crew: Ff. Adam Rivera Crew: Ff. Michael Guala
Crew: Ff. Charles Commini Jr. Crew: Ff. Steven Hodgdon
Private Vehicle
Fire Police Capt. Robert Hazen Ff. Joseph Dlabik Sr.

Photo copyright (c) 2008 by Michael Ratcliffe
For additional photos from this incident, click here