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LAWRENCE ROAD FIRE CO.


NOTEWORTHY INCIDENTS
OCTOBER 2008

During the month of October 2008, Lawrence Road Fire Co. volunteers responded to a total of 33 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.



STRUCTURE FIRE
Date & Time: Monday, October 6, 2008 – 10:14 a.m.
Location: 4408 Province Line Road, Lawrence Township, N.J.
Details: Lawrenceville, Lawrence Road and Slackwood fire companies were dispatched on Box 23-30 on a report of smoke coming from the clothes dryer in the basement of the home. Lawrenceville Chief Ray Nagy arrived and confirmed he had a working fire in the basement. He immediately special-called Ladder Tower 62 from the Princeton Hook & Ladder Co. to the scene. Telesquirt 23 arrived at 10:24 a.m., followed by Engine 22 at 10:25 a.m., Engine 21 at 10:26 a.m., and Ladder Tower 62 at 10:32 a.m. The fire was knocked down by 10:36 a.m. While actual fire damage was contained to the clothes dryer and surrounding area, the entire residence sustained smoke damage. After helping with overhaul and ventilation, Engine 22 was released at 10:48 a.m. and was back in quarters by 11 a.m.
Responding LRFC Personnel
Rescue 22
Officer: Ff. Shaun Dlabik Driver: Paid Driver Robert Santello
Crew: Ff. Steven Adzima Crew: Ff. Charles Commini Sr.
Crew: Ff. Keith Kent Crew: Ff. Michael Guala




STRUCTURE FIRE
Date & Time: Tuesday, October 7, 2008 – 2:29 p.m.
Location: 10321 Maple Leaf Drive, Lawrence Township, N.J.
Details: Lawrenceville, Lawrence Road and Slackwood fire companies were dispatched on Box 23-50 after a resident of the Avalon Run apartment complex called 911 to report seeing fire and smoke coming from the balcony of an apartment nearby. Police soon arrived and reported a working fire. As a result, at 2:35 p.m., Mercer County Central dispatched Engine 12 from Mercerville Fire Co. and Ladder Tower 17 from Nottingham Fire Co. to the scene. Fortunately, police and firefighters were able to quickly extinguish the blaze. Investigators later determined the fire started on the balcony of a third-floor apartment where a resident, who had been finishing a piece of furniture, had left a rag soaked in linseed oil. The oil-soaked rag, heated by the afternoon sun, spontaneously combusted and ignited a table and part of the balcony. Embers then fell and ignited the balcony of the second-floor apartment below. Police helped contain the fire by throwing water on the flames from a fish tank in one of the apartments. While damage was contained to the two balconies, the flames' intense heat shattered the sliding glass doors of both apartments. Rescue 22 was released at 3:04 p.m. and was back in quarters by 3:21 p.m. Apparatus that operated on the scene included: Telesquirt 23, Engine 21, Engine 22, Engine 12, and Ladder Tower 17.
Responding LRFC Personnel
Engine 22
Officer: Capt. Ed Budzinski Driver: Paid Driver Robert Santello
Crew: Lt. Richard Laird III Crew: Ff. Keith Kent
Crew: Ff. Michael Byrd Crew: Ff. Michael Guala

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




HAZARDOUS MATERIALS INCIDENT
Date & Time: Wednesday, October 8, 2008 – 1:34 a.m.
Location: 865 Lower Ferry Road, Ewing Township, N.J.
Details: At 1:11 a.m. all three Ewing Township fire companies were dispatched on Box 33-10 to investigate an unusual odor inside the Woodbrook House apartment building. West Trenton firefighters and EMS personnel were met by some residents who reported an odor that had made their eyes start to water and also made it hard for them to breathe. Ewing firefighters began evacuating the building and requested that Trenton’s HazMat team and a rapid intervention team from Lawrence Road be dispatched. Rescue 22’s crew stood by as the RIT while HazMat personnel entered the building and took air samples. Tests then revealed that the unusual odor that had made residents ill was actually pepper spray. Authorities soon discovered that a 38-year-old resident of the building had allegedly sprayed the chemical irritant on the walls in one hallway. The pepper spray was then filtered throughout the four-story building by way of the ventilation system. Police reportedly charged the woman with a crime for spraying the chemical. Residents were allowed back inside after the sprayed walls were cleaned and the entire building ventilated. Rescue 22 was released at 4 a.m. and was back in quarters by 4:09 a.m. Apparatus that operated on the scene included: Engine 33, Rescue 33, Engine 32, Rescue 32, Ladder Tower 31, Light Plant 31, Rescue 22, and Trenton HazMat Task Force (Rescue 1, Ladder 1 and Engine 1).
Responding LRFC Personnel
Rescue 22
Officer: Assistant Chief John Britton Driver: Ff. Shaun Dlabik
Crew: Lt. Richard Laird III Crew: Ff. Ryan Dlabik
Crew: Ff. Adam Rivera Crew: Ff. Keith Kent
Crew: Ff. Steven Hodgdon  




HAZARDOUS MATERIALS INCIDENT
Date & Time: Friday, October 24, 2008 – 4:34 p.m.
Location: Eggerts Crossing Village, 175 Johnson Avenue, Lawrence Township, N.J.
Details: At 4:34 p.m. Lawrence Road Fire Co. and the Trenton Fire Department’s hazardous materials team were dispatched at the request of police officers who had discovered 17 bottles containing unknown chemicals after they arrested a man for drug-related offenses. Deputy Chief John Fleming, closely followed by Chief Richard Farletta and Rescue 22, arrived to find that police had placed the bottles on the sidewalk outside an apartment. The area near the bottles was secured and residents of the apartment complex were kept at a safe distance. The HazMat team arrived at 4:51 p.m. and members of Rescue 22’s crew helped HazMat team members suit up. A hoseline from Rescue 22 was also stretched as preparation for decontamination. Wearing full Level B protective suits, Trenton firefighters Frank Wilcox and Anthony Moran then entered the hot zone, and used a portable computer and other high-tech equipment to analyze the bottles’ contents. Ultimately, the contents were identified as toluene, dimethylamine, caesium hydroxide and other flammable and corrosive chemicals. A representative of the state Department of Environmental Protection responded to the scene to supervise the removal of the chemicals by a clean-up contractor. While they admitted some of the chemicals could be used in a makeshift methamphetamine lab, authorities said they were unsure why the suspect was in possession of the chemicals. Following decontamination, all units cleared the scene just after 7 p.m. and Rescue 22 was back in quarters by 7:21 p.m.
Responding LRFC Personnel
Rescue 22
Officer: Lt. Richard Laird III Driver: Ff. Shaun Dlabik
Crew: Lt. Joseph Dlabik Jr. Crew: Ff. Ryan Dlabik
Crew: Ff. Keith Kent Crew: Ff. Charles Commini Sr.
Crew: Ff. Steven Hodgdon  
Car 22
Chief Richard Farletta
Car 22-1
Deputy Chief John Fleming

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




GAS MAIN RUPTURE
Date & Time: Friday, October 31, 2008 – 9:41 a.m.
Location: 100 Federal City Road, Lawrence Township, N.J.
Details: Lawrence Road Fire Co. was dispatched for a reported gas leak. Telesquirt 22 arrived to find that a contractor had accidentally ruptured an underground high pressure 1-inch diameter natural gas main. Faced with an active gas leak, Command 22 (Capt. Ed Budzinski) requested PSE&G respond with a rush. As a precaution, he also special-called Lawrenceville’s Telesquirt 23 to standby at the scene. Firefighters secured the area while PSE&G personnel worked to stop the leak. Ultimately, the damaged line was clamped and the gas flow halted at 10:30 a.m. With the scene now safe, firefighters left PSE&G and the contractor to repair the line. Telesquirt 22 was back in quarters by 10:42 a.m.
Responding LRFC Personnel
Telesquirt 22
Officer: Capt. Ed Budzinski Driver: Paid Driver Robert Santello
Crew: Lt. Joseph Dlabik Jr. Crew: Ff. Adam Rivera
Crew: Ff. Keith Kent  




STRUCTURE FIRE
Date & Time: Friday, October 31, 2008 – 10:28 p.m.
Location: Care One Nursing Home, 1201 Parkway Avenue, Ewing Township, N.J.
Details: All three Ewing fire companies were dispatched at 10:21 p.m. for a fire alarm at the nursing home. After receiving a report that a microwave oven was on fire in the facility, Assistant 33 upgraded the assignment to Box 33-11’s full first alarm, with an extra engine and ladder as a precaution. That resulted in the dispatch at 10:28 p.m. of Lawrence Road’s Rescue 22, Slackwood’s Snorkel 21, and Union-Titusville’s Engine 53. Ultimately, Ewing firefighters found that the fire, located in the pantry of one wing of the nursing home, had been extinguished prior to their arrival by someone using a dry chemical extinguisher. Rescue 22 arrived on scene at 10:36 p.m. and the crew stood by as the rapid intervention team while other crews confirmed there was no fire extension. Rescue 22 was released at 11:02 p.m. and was back in quarters by 11:13 p.m.
Responding LRFC Personnel
Rescue 22
Officer: Assistant Chief John Britton Driver: Ff. Charles Commini Sr.
Crew: Ff. Charles Commini Jr. Crew: Ff. Michael Guala
Crew: Ff. Keith Kent Crew: Ff. Shaun Dlabik