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The Pennsylvania Edition PUBLISHING SINCE 1993



JULY, 2016



Crews were dispatched to 212 Mine Rd. in Pike Township, PA at 2:23 P.M. on Monday, May 9th for an agricultural structure fire, with a silo reported to be on fire. Arriving crews found a large silo that was partially dismantled, with approximately 30-feet of 20-year-old compacted silage exposed from the top of the structure and on fire. - See full story on page 28

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1st Responder News (ISSN 1525-1683) - Pennsylvania edition - Vol. 20 No. 7 - is published monthly, 12 times a year for $36 per year by Belsito Communications, Inc., 1 Ardmore Street, NY 12553. Periodicals Postage Paid at Newburgh, NY and additional mailing offices. Postmaster: Send address changes to 1st Responder News, 1 Ardmore Street, NY 12553. No financial responsibility is assumed by this newspaper to publish a display, classified, or legal ad or for typographical errors except of reprinting that part of the ad which was omitted or in error. Omissions or errors must be A division of: brought to the attention of the newspaper during the s a m e month of publication.

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Working house fire in Lock Haven Lock Haven Fire Department was dispatched for a working house fire in Lock Haven at around 8:00 A.M. on June 1st. Units arrived on scene with fire showing from the first-floor. Crews arrived on scene and made a quick knock down. Units on scene were Lock Haven Fire Department, Dunnstown Fire Company, Mill Hall Fire Company and Lock Haven EMS.

Garage fire on Greenwich Street On May 24th, the Berks County DES dispatched companies to a garage fire near 11th and Greenwich Street. With units responding, Chief Moyer (C9), was advised that Reading Police Officers located a garage on fire behind the firehouse apartments. Engine-9 was on scene with a single-story, stand-alone garage on fire to the rear of 1107 Greenwich. One line was stretched and the fire was knocked down quickly. The fire was placed under control in ten minutes and no injuries were reported.

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July, 2016



July, 2016

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Fourteen homes across two blocks destroyed by four-alarm fire in Shenandoah At 10:40 A.M. on June 27th, Schuylkill County 9-1-1 dispatched the first-alarm assignment to the area of 400 East Centre Street in Shenandoah for a working structure fire. The first-alarm brought the Shenandoah Fire Department, Frackville Ladder 43-20 and Mahanoy City West End. First responding units were advised that Communications was receiving multiple calls on a JUMP TO FILE# building fire. Mar- 062716133 shal-742 arrived on the scene shortly thereafter and reported a working fire with fire showing. The building involved in fire was previously damaged by fire two years ago on a night that Shenandoah fought four total fires. Squirt-745 arrived on scene and positioned on North Union Street where fire was rapidly spreading up the block. Engine751 was directed to approach the scene via the bypass and make access to the rear from Mount Vernon Street, where they found heavy fire to the rear of the building after securing a water supply. Engine-742 secured an additional water supply and pulled past the fire building on Centre Street and began to flow water from the deck gun. Engine-747 pulled into the scene and positioned at Union and Mt. Vernon Streets. A secondalarm was requested to the scene. Frackville Ladder 43-20 came into the scene off of Lloyd Street, where they secured a water supply and positioned next to Engine747. Seconds after the secondalarm was issued, Mahanoy City Citizens Engine-454 went responding and was directed into the parking lot on the “D” side of the building, beginning an exterior attack with big lines. Englewood Engine-369 responded on the second-alarm and stretched a handline to the “B” side. Ringtown Engine 30-15 came into town and staged at Lloyd and Union Streets. Shenandoah Heights Engine881 was directed to position behind Engine-369 and begin to set up a dump site for tankers, as the local hydrant system was quickly taxed with multiple units using heavy lines on all sides of the building. A two-alarm tanker task force was requested to the scene. Tankers from Fountain Springs, Ringtown, Sheppton-Oneida, Nuremberg-Weston, Ryan Township, Gordon, Lavelle, Aristes, Llewellyn and Mount Carbon all responded to haul water. Gi-

Heavy fire vents from the second-floor window of 401 East Centre Street in Shenandoah during a four-alarm fire. J. KRIESHER

rardville Engine 45-10 filled the tankers at the Shenandoah Valley School Complex on West Centre Street. Firefighters continued to work in an attempt to contain the fire, however; it was growing too rapidly and smoke began to push from a row of homes on Mount Vernon Street. A third-alarm was issued shortly before 11 A.M. Saint Clair Engine-702 responded on the third-alarm assignment and was directed to Bridge Street, pulling a draft from the creek that runs below. After getting water, Engine-702 supplied Engine-454. Ashland Ladder 38-25 responded and sent it's crew to the scene while the Ladder staged away. A Rapid Intervention Team out of Pottsville was also dispatched, bringing Engine-32 to the scene. Mahanoy City Tower-456 arrived on the scene and after removing a fence, positioned in a parking lot in front of Engine-454

and began master stream operations. Approximately one hour into the incident, smoke and fire could still be seen rising from the row on Mt. Vernon Street while firefighters attempted to the control the fire on the Centre Street and Union Street sides. Brown smoke began to push from the eves of a detached dwelling at the corner of Union and Mt. Vernon Streets. A fourth-alarm was issued. Tamaqua South Ward Engine784, Schuylkill Haven Engine 6312 and Mount Carmel Truck-2 were dispatched to the scene on the fourth-alarm. Throughout the incident, Tamaqua Ladder-770, Minersville Rescue-518, Tower-519 and Saint Clair Engine-705 were brought into different stations on a stand-by assignment. At 12:03 P.M., Communications advised command that they were receiving a report of a house on fire at 226 South Ferguson

An Englewood firefighter knocks down fire through a window off Centre Street in Shenandoah. J. KRIESHER

Street. The first-alarm was dispatched, bringing Engines 705, 784, 63-12, Altamont Engine-367, Ladder-770 and Nuremberg Ladder-581. Engine-784 arrived on the scene of Ferguson Street and found neighbors hitting a fire on the firstfloor of an abandoned dwelling with fire extinguishers. Engine-784 quickly stretched a line through the front door and knocked down the rest of the fire. The rest of the assignment for Ferguson Street was recalled as the situation was quickly brought under control. All units were then directed to stage at Main and Centre Streets in Shenandoah. At around 12:30 P.M., Command decided to cease all exterior and interior operations, as it appeared the fire was coming under control on all three streets. After regrouping, ladder pipes from Squirt745, 43-20 and Tower-456 were used to pour massive amounts of

water onto the scene before sending crews back to overhaul. Firefighters received rehab from EMS personnel from throughout northern Schuylkill County and also received cold drinks and snacks donated by local businesses. The American Red Cross was on the scene as well. Units from the third and fourthalarm began to be released around 2 P.M., while the second-alarm remained on scene until nearly 3 P.M. Some of the borough units were released in the early evening and all apparatus were cleared by 8 P.M. The Pennsylvania State Police Fire Marshal's office was called into both scenes to help investigate the cause of the fires along with the Shenandoah Borough Police. The morning after the fire, the Fire Marshal announced that the cause of the fire was determined to be arson.

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Accident with injuries in Upper Hanover Township On Wednesday, May 11th at 5:03 P.M. the East Greenville Fire Co. was dispatched to an accident with injuries on Kutztown Rd. in the Upper Hanover Twp. Upon arrival, Chief-38 had a pick-up on it's side with two victims standing on the road. The victims stated that they hit the windshield with their heads. Assisting East Greenville were EMS units from Upper Perk and Bally. Also on scene were fire police from Pennsburg and Hereford Fire Companies as well as the PA State Police. The cause of the accident is pending.


July, 2016

Firefighters from West End Fire & Rescue Co. attack the fire and extinguish.


Blaze destroys mobile home in Cumberland County Emergency personnel from ten fire and EMS companies from both Cumberland and Franklin Counties responded to a mobile home fire on Wednesday, June 22nd at 12:10 P.M., located at 129 Booz Road. Upon arrival, first-due firefighters found the 12 x 40 structure with heavy smoke and fire coming from the windows. A family of three resided in the mobile home. “The initial call was dispatched as smoke coming from the mobile home reported by a neighbor," said Fire Chief Ed Hoover of Newburg Hopewell Fire Co. Firefighters not only battled

JUMP TO FILE #062616103 the intense heat of the flames and the thick black smoke, but also the high temperatures. Other companies were called to the scene for additional manpower. Hoover said, "The family did have insurance and the Red Cross was on the scene to assist the family members with their needs.” “One resident was home at the time of the fire but was uninjured and observed on the scene by EMS personnel. The cause of the fire was electrical, the main panel box

was on fire and then spread throughout the mobile home,” added Hoover. No injuries were reported to any firefighters. Emergency personnel responding to the scene were from Newburg-Hopewell Fire Co., West End Fire & Rescue Co., Vigilant Hose Co., Cumberland Valley Hose Co., Friendship Hose Co. of Newville, Walnut Bottom Fire Co., Upper Frankford Township Fire Co., West Pennsboro Fire Co., Fayetteville Fire Co. and Shippensburg Area EMS. - DENNY CLOPPER


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MVA with entrapment in Bridgeport Lafayette and Manheim Township Station-204 firefighters responded to a Motor Vehicle Accident with entrapment on East King Street on May 8th. This two-vehicle crash had one female trapped in her compact car. She was freed by rescue workers and transported to LGH. The second victim, which had more serious injuries, was also taken to a local hospital.

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Joseph P. Belsito ( ••• GENERAL MANAGER


Ashley Ramos ( ••• MANAGING EDITOR

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Rick Billings (Cartoon) Henry Campbell (Staying Safe) Bob Long (Cartoon) John Malecky (Apparatus, Video, Bookshelf) Didymus McHugh (Chaplain’s Corner) Fernando Villicana (Chaplain’s Corner)


Jordan Bankert • Stephen Barrett• Jason Batz • Juan F Blakley • Denny Clopper • Timothy Coover • Gary Diday • John G England IV • Dale Feerher • Andrew Getka • Jeff Goldberg • Jeff Hawrlye • Doug Kahn • Nik Knauer • Timothy Knepp • JC Kriesher • Joseph Lennon • Tom Leszczynski • Nick Markowitz • Anthony Miccicke • Eric Oberdorff • Artie Osniak • Luke Patterson• Bryan Phelps • Gordon Pippin • Eric Rasmussen • Terry Ritz • Frank Robinson • Dennis Seroskie • Patrick Shoop Jr • Jesse Shutt • Darin Smith • Ken Snyder • Dan Wade • Dennis Wetherhold Jr


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1st Responder News’ graphics team will work with you on your adverA division of: tisement free of charge. Additionally, we offer a complete marketing department for all of your printed needs. Whether they are posters, or single sheet handouts, full color or black and white, no one else delivers the high quality work at our competitive prices. As a newspaper in the Belsito Communications Inc. family, 1st Responder News has a state-of-the-art production facility which utilizes the latest scanning technology available. Materials are processed using Power Macintosh G4s. Output is handled on our HP Color LaserJet 8500 to produce the highest quality black and white or color prints on the market.

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In memory of those who gave all 1st Responder Newspaper honors and remembers emergency responders lost in the line of duty

North Carolina: Joshua Warren Rank: Firefighter Incident Date: June 16, 2016 Death Date: June 16, 2016 Fire Department: Alexis Volunteer Fire Department Initial Summary: Firefighter Warren fell ill from a nature of injury still to be determined while onduty and engaged in physical fitness training at a local middle school. Warren was rushed to CHSLincoln Medical Center, where he later succumbed to his injury. Hawaii: Clifford M. Rigsbee Rank: Firefighter III Incident Date: June 14, 2016 Death Date: June 16, 2016 Fire Department: Honolulu Fire Department Initial Summary: Firefighter III Rigsbee was found unconscious and floating in the water immediately after being separated from a jet ski/rescue sled while participating in a rescue watercraft training exercise. The firefighter operating the jet ski jumped into the water to initiate a rescue and with the assistance of others, including a nearby off-duty firefighter, brought Rigsbee to shore where he was rushed to the Straub Medical Center in critical condition. The firefighter/operator of the watercraft, who was also injured in the incident, was treated at the hospital and released. In spite of all efforts, Firefighter Rigsbee, who had suffered a spinal column injury, succumbed two days later while in the hospital. North Carolina: David K. Britt Rank:Fire Chief Incident Date: June 17, 2016 Death Date: June 18, 2016 Fire Department: Severn Volunteer Fire Department Initial Summary: Fire Chief Britt suffered a medical emergency at his home several hours after responding to a motor vehicle crash. The nature and cause of fatal injury are still to be reported.

Ohio: John R. Fritz Rank: Firefighter Incident Date: June 27, 2016 Death Date: June 27, 2016 Fire Department: Austintown Fire Department Initial Summary: While on duty at Austintown Fire Station #1, Firefighter Fritz passed away from a nature and cause of fatal injury still to be determined. Firefighter Fritz ran several emergency calls throughout his shift, and when he did not report to the truck for an emergency medical response, his crew found him in the station unresponsive. Fellow responders and Lane LifeTrans Ambulance provided medical assistance but Firefighter Fritz did not regain consciousness.

Pennsylvania: Michael Morgan Rank: Deputy Fire Chief Incident Date: May 3, 2016 Death Date: June 26, 2016 Fire Department: Garrettford - Drexel Hill Volunteer Fire Company Initial Summary: Deputy Fire Chief Michael Morgan began feeling ill during or shortly after responding to two fire calls on May 3, 2016. After a brief rest period at the firehouse, Chief Morgan reported for his midnight shift at the Delaware County Emergency Communications Center where his condition worsened and was then transported by ambulance to Riddle Memorial Hospital in Middletown. Chief Morgan succumbed to his CVA related injuries on June 26, 2016.

Nebraska: Eric C. Speck Rank: Captain Incident Date: June 23, 2016 Death Date: June 27, 2016 Fire Department: Dakota City Fire Department Initial Summary: On June 23, 2016, Captain Speck complained of chest pains while on-scene of an emergency medical call. Afterward, he traveled to the hospital where it was found he had suffered a heart attack. Captain Speck succumbed to his injury on the morning of June 27, 2016, while in the hospital.

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July, 2016

One injured in MVA Late in the evening of June 16th, at 10:45 P.M., Box 24-2 was dispatched to the area of 10102 Route 209 in Williams Township, for reports of an accident with injuries. This brought units JUMP TO FILE# from Company-24 061816100 (Williamstown) and Schuylkill County Rescue-647 (Sheridan), as well as EMS from Company-24 (Williamstown EMS). Units arrived on scene to find a single vehicle off the side of the

road, in the woods and laying on it's side. The single occupant of the vehicle self-extricated with the help of by-standers who had stopped. After accessing the situation, Command-24 placed Schuylkill Rescue-647 in service and EMS requested ALS to the scene, bringing MICU 6-3 (Life Team-Medic 6). The patient was packaged and transported to the local trauma center. Crews from Williamstown Fire remained on scene until the vehicle was towed. - JESSE SHUTT


Chester City two-alarm fire The vehicle is shown laying on it's side in the woods.


Just before 2 A.M. on June 22nd, Chester City Fire Department along with Crozer EMS units were dispatched to the intersection of 3rd and Yarnall for a structure fire with reported entrapment. Upon arrival, crews had fire showing from the second-floor of an occupied dwelling. Command reported five trapped on the third-floor fire escape and requested a second-alarm. Multiple EMS units arrived a short time later. Chester City crews made quick work with two handlines and the fire was placed under control in about one hour. There were no serious injuries reported.

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Fallen tree causes power outage On Mother's Day afternoon, May 8th, the Lower Providence Fire Department was notified of an outside electrical fire. Quint, Engine and Asst 53-1 arrived to find a large tree fallen into numerous wires, right in between two poles. PECO arrived and quickly restored power to some of the neighborhood.


One flown from Wiconisco accident In the late evening hours of Friday, June 24th, the silence on the Dauphin County Communications EMS dispatch channel was broken. A report came in from Portable2403 that he came across an accident involving a pick-up truck that crashed head-on into a tree and at least one individual was in the vehicle. At 11:47 P.M., Box 23-5 was dispatched to the 8100 Block of Route-209 in Wiconisco Township for this accident with injuries. This brought units from Company-23

JUMP TO FILE #062516102 (Wiconisco), Rescue-21 (Elizabethville) Life Team - Medic-6 and Williamstown EMS to the scene. MICU 6-7 arrived on scene first to confirm a single occupant entrapped in the vehicle and requested Life Lion be placed in the air, with a landing zone at the helipad located at Station-23. Rescue-23 arrived on the scene and went to work with hydraulic

tools to remove the driver's side door. Once this was completed, it was found that the patient's legs were not trapped under the dash. He was then extricated from the vehicle, packaged and placed into the back of Ambulance 24-1, who then transported him to the Landing Zone set up by Engine-22 (Lykens). After arrival at the landing zone, the patient was transferred to Life Lion and was flown to the local trauma center. - JESSE SHUTT


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Minor injury in West Mahanoy crash Around 11:15 P.M. on Thursday, May 5th, Schuylkill County 9-1-1 dispatched the Altamont Fire Company and the Friendship Fire Company of Englewood to the area of 102 Morea Road in West Mahanoy Township, for a motor vehicle accident with unknown injuries. Engine-367 arrived on the scene to find one vehicle versus a tree with one occupant self-extricated. The engine crew checked on injuries and secured hazards while shutting down the roadway. Engine-369 was directed to the area of the Altamont Station to shut down the roadway. The West Mahanoy Township Police investigated the crash with the help of the Frackville Police. Shenandoah EMS provided a patient evaluation.


Truck-5 from the Annville-Cleona Fire District delivers FF Matt Zechman and his date to their prom at the Hershey Lodge in May.

1ST Responder Newspaper - PA

July, 2016



July, 2016

1ST Responder Newspaper - PA


Motorcycle accident in Upper Hanover Township

On May 31st, at 4:25 P.M., East Greenville Fire Co. was dispatched to a motorcycle accident at Gravel Pike and Water St., in the township. It turned out to be a minor accident and no transport of a patient was necessary. Details of the accident were not known. Assisting the fire company were Pennsburg Fire Police, Upper Perk EMS and PA State Police.

Lindsey Palmer returns to 1st Responder News Publisher Joseph P. Belsito announced that Lindsey Palmer has been appointed as Managing Editor for 1st Responder Newspaper effective immediately. Palmer previously served with the company as Office Manager of 1st Responder Wireless News.

“We are thrilled to have Lindsey take point in our editorial department,” said Belsito. “She will not only work hard to forge great relationships with the outstanding correspondents we currently have, but will look to expand our coverage geographically into new areas, which is one of our top goals.” Palmer will be reaching out to correspondents over the coming weeks to introduce herself and will also be working to further build out her network of contacts throughout the local emergency services community.

General Manager Kathy Ronsini stated, “I am pleased and excited to welcome Lindsey Palmer back to our team. I am confident that she will be an excellent match for the position of managing editor. Lindsey exhibits a high level of care and compassion for the emergency


Ladder-3's aerial was used to access a fire on the top floor of this vacant building. The interior stairs were unusable.

Fire next door to vacant mattress warehouse Late in the evening of June 22nd, the Berks County DES dispatched companies to West Spring Street, near the Schuylkill Avenue bridge, for a report of a fire in a building. Engine-7 arrived at a two-and-a-half-story vacant dwelling next to a warehouse, with smoke showing from a window. Firefighters attempted to stretch a line through the first-floor of the structure but were stopped by a deteriorated staircase. Ladder-3's area ladder was used to access the upper floor with a hose line. The fire was knocked down and placed under control within 15-minutes. Chief Born (C5), was in command.

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services and I hope that she will find her work challenging and rewarding.”

Lindsey Palmer said “Thank you to everyone on the 1st Responder News team for the very warm welcome; and I consider it a privilege to be back. I am eager to make a positive contribution to the company and


I am grateful for your confidence in my abilities. I am already teaming up with our current supporters of the newspapers and am very much looking forward to working with all of the new ones that will be joining us.”

Lindsey can be reached at 845-5347500 ext. 212 or

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July, 2016


Several accidents in same area stifle traffic for hours Reading, PA - Shortly after 5 A.M. on Monday, June 13th, the Berks County Department of Emergency Services dispatched companies for a vehicle accident on the West Shore Bypass, Westbound. Companies arrived with a construction vehicle JUMP TO FILE# versus a car with 061416104 minor injuries. Firefighters assisted the occupants and applied oil-dry to fluids on the ground. One hour later, a tri-axle dump truck would swerve in the same area and crash through the jersey barrier, into the Westbound lanes. With RPD and the original occupants still on scene from the first wreck, no one received any injuries. While crews worked the second accident, a third accident occurred a short distance away from the original. No injuries were reported in that incident. Traffic on the West Shore Bypass was stifled for several hours, with many stuck on the highway itself. Chief Mogel (C2) was in command for all three MVA's.


Photo taken after the second accident at the same point on the West Shore Bypass.


Reading Firefighters work this accident at 5:03 A.M. on June 13th, on the West Shore Bypass.

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July, 2016

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ANTIQUE APPARATUS If you have photos for Antique Apparatus please upload them on our website, or email them to


Tamaqua Fire Department once ran this 1978 American La France 100' Aerial. The Truck is now privately owned.


Two-alarm fire with explosion


1962 American La France 100' Aerial. Ex-Shenandoah Rescue Hook and Ladder in Shenandoah ,PA.

On Wednesday, June 15th at around 12:35 P.M., a box alarm was transmitted for the City of Coatesville for a reported building fire in the area of Lincoln Highway and Route 82. Seconds after dispatch, Engine-43 from Coatesville, which is stationed less than two blocks away, went on location with heavy fire showing from the roof. Ladder-41, also from Coatesville, reported the same and asked for the working fire dispatch. Upon arrival, Engine-43 secured their own water supply. While laying into the scene, a large explosion took place on the roof of the building. The building in-

JUMP TO FILE #062016121 volved was a three-story business on the first-floor and apartments on the top floors. Once Ladder-41 arrived, crews began to stretch several handlines to the rear of the building, going up an outside stairwell to gain access to the apartments and to the roof. It was reported that propane tanks were on the roof and that one had exploded. Crews were met with fire on the third-floor and the roof of the building. Due to the amount of visible fire,

Command requested that a secondalarm be transmitted. While several crews worked on both the third-floor and roof, others did primary and secondary searches of the building which came up negative. After approximately 30 minutes, the fire was placed under control. Units operated for approximately two hours in total. Firefighters from Coatesville, Thorndale, Modena, Westwood, Wagontown, Keystone Valley, Sadsburyville, VA Hospital, Lionville and Downingtown all operated on the scene. - MARK WALSH


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1937 Hahn with Woodlawn Fire Co. in Woodlawn, PA.




1952 Mack Type 75 A Pumper, Ex-City of Richmond, VA., Bureau of Fire.

Brothers Matt and Mark Mlynek take time for a photo after participating in a rescue demonstration to discourage distracted and impaired driving, a program which Mark coordinated, at the Mahanoy Area High School on May 6th. Both brothers are dedicated volunteers with the West End Fire & Rescue Company in Mahanoy City.

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July, 2016



July, 2016

1ST Responder Newspaper - PA

Fast moving fire destroys three buildings Shortly after 1 P.M. on Wednesday, June 8th, fire broke out in the former Gloria’s Cantina strip club, located along Route 30 in North Huntington Township in Westmoreland County. The first arriving fire officer reported that three buildings were involved. The former JUMP TO FILE# club, which is now 060816112 owned by the Hartford Heights Volunteer Fire Department, was in the process of being demolished by a demolition crew that went for a lunch break shortly before the fire was reported. A day care, Wiggles N Giggles Academy, had to evacuate between 15 and 20 children, ages 6-months to 6-years-old, to a nearby storage locker facility. Due to high winds, the fire quickly spread to the day care. A total of three building were destroyed by the fast moving fire. Fortunately, no one was injured. The North Huntington Police Department, with the assistance of the Allegheny County Fire Marshal's K-9 unit, is investigating what may have started the fire. - ERIC RASMUSSEN



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Firefighters open up the roof of a day care, one of three buildings destroyed by the blaze.


"Damien Danis has been a correspondent for the NJ edition of 1st Responder Newspaper since our very first issue in 1993. He has been a member of the Saddle Brook Fire Department for 25-years, holding the positions of Chief Engineer, Lieutenant and Captain and currently holds the position of Engineer once again. He has been a member of three truck committees and was also Co-Chairman of the department's 100th Anniversary Parade. Damien said, “I have also had the honor of holding the position of President for the New Jersey Metro Fire Photographers Association for three terms.”

1ST Responder Newspaper - PA

July, 2016



July, 2016

1ST Responder Newspaper - PA


If you have photos you would like to see in our In Service feature, please upload them on our website or email them to

Upper Allen Fire Department operates a 2012 International/4 Guys 1000/2000 Tanker.


Fire quickly consumes Garfield home.


Pittsburgh four-alarm fire quickly consumes home, damages two others

Blooming Grove's 25 Rescue is a 2004 Pierce with 2008 Freightliner M2, 112 chassis. Formerly a Quantum crash test truck, Marco Emergency Equipment eventually bought the pumper after retirement and did the conversion. It has a 2000 gpm rear mounted pump, 750 gallon water and 25 gallon foam tanks, 25 kw generator and Will Burt Night Scan.


Palmerton West End Fire Department operates a 2014 International/KME 1250/400/20 foam.



Blooming Grove's 25 Engine is this 2007 GMC C5500/KME 4 x 4 with a 1000 gpm pump, 300 gallon water tank and 20 gallon foam tank. It carries a 3.5 kw generator.

Around 2:12 P.M. on June 6th, City of Pittsburgh Firefighters were dispatched to a residential structure fire at 5442 Kincaid Street located in the Garfield section of the city. It was reported that a microwave had caught on fire inside of the residence. An 80-year-old woman who reported that the microwave had caught fire was able to escape without injury. The fire consumed the kitchen and quickly spread through the walls and into the roof of the three-story home.

JUMP TO FILE #060716107 A second-alarm was quickly struck as firefighters attempted to get a knock on the fire, however; the fire quickly consumed the house, forcing firefighters to evacuate the home at one point. A third-alarm was called shortly after firefighters had to evacuate, as fire began to ignite another home on the bravo side of the original fire building. Within seconds of calling

for the third-alarm, a majority of the roof on the delta side collapsed and a fourth-alarm was then requested. The fire was placed under control around 3:30 P.M. The fire destroyed the original home and heavily damaged a second home. A third home sustained heat and smoke damage. Everyone made it out of the second home. The American Red Cross is now assisting those displaced by the fire and City Fire Investigators are still investigating.



1ST Responder Newspaper - PA

July, 2016



July, 2016

1ST Responder Newspaper - PA

1ST Responder Newspaper - PA

July, 2016



Early morning fire in boarding house

Reading, PA - On the morning of June 5th at 4:11 A.M., the Berks County DES dispatched a box alarm assignment to 907 Franklin Street. Members of the C-Platoon arrived to a threestory apartment building with fire showing in the rear. Firefighters from Engine-1 stretched a line through the building to the second-floor and met fire extending into a hallway. The fire was knocked down and pushed back into the room. Rescue crews needed to check multiple locked rooms, as the building was a rooming house. All searches would prove clear. The fire was placed under control at 4:29 A.M., with overhaul. The Fire Marshal's Office is investigating. All displaced occupants were being assisted by the Red Cross. Chef Hart (C4), was in command.


Fire from clothes dryer breaks out in apartment building On Friday, June 3rd at 4:26 A.M., Pennsburg Fire Co., along with East Greenville and Red Hill, were dispatched to a building fire at 119 4th St., in the borough. Upon arrival, Chief Scott Seip had a heavy smoke condition on the first-floor of the building. He set up Command-65 and notified Montgomery County Radio to upgrade to a second-alarm for manpower and equipment. The building was completely evacuated before arrival. The fire was mainly con-

JUMP TO FILE #060316101 tained to a utility room that housed a clothes dryer. The dryer was engulfed in flames and had spread to the inside wall. Quick response from the arrival of the firemen, in addition to the teamwork of the manpower polls had the fire under control within 35 minutes. The use of ventilating fans as well as opening the windows

helped to vent the smoke from the building. The second-floor also had to be ventilated due to the spread of the smoke and fumes. There were no injuries reported and the estimated damage was unknown. Assisting on the fire call were fire companies from Milford Twp., Hereford, Green Lane and New Hanover. Upper Perk EMS, Upper Perk Police and Pennsburg Fire Police also assisted. - TERRY RITZ


If your Department has photos you would like to see in our “Command Vehicles� feature, please upload them on our website, or email them to


House fire breaks out in Erie

Firefighters from Belle Valley, Kearsarge, West Lake, Kuhl Hose as well as a few other departments responded to 7939 Appleman Rd. at approximately 8:15 P.M. on May 26th. Chief360 arrived to find heavy fire and smoke from the exposure "B" side and rear. Fire was in an attached shed, which extended into and up through the house. Firefighters were rotated out of the structure and given water. Duty Car-2 of the Duncannon Fire Company is a 2012 Chevy Tahoe.



July, 2016

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Ron Morin with his "EMERGENCY!" replica apparatus at an apparatus muster on Long Island in June.


A paramedic’s gift to the EMS world TOM LESZCZYNSKI

Smoke vents from this dwelling at 529 South 15th Street in Reading.

Firefighters find ceiling fan on fire

Reading, PA - Around lunchtime on Saturday, June 4th, the Berks County DES dispatched companies to 529 South 15th Street for a ceiling fan on fire. Engine-1 arrived at a threestory MOR with smoke and fire showing from the third-floor. A hose line was stretched quickly into the structure with fire in the ceiling on the third-floor. Crews reported that all occupants were out of the dwelling. The fire was placed under control at 12:20 P.M. One firefighter suffered a minor injury. Chief Born (C5), was in command.

Ron Morin now runs Sugarloaf Ambulance/Rescue Service vehicles on U.S. Route 2 East. A television show in the 1970's got him interested in emergency medical work. “I personally was inspired by the TV series 'Emergency!' to become a paramedic,” he said. In 1982, he was part of the first paramedic graduating class. Morin has now built a replica of Squad 51's apparatus that dominated the television show, racing around the streets of Los Angeles County. This was made possible by purchasing a 1971 Dodge from the Alna, Maine, Fire Department and an original paramedic rescue body in California. The Dodge was used by the A.F.D. as a brush fire unit. While searching for a utility body, Morin said he came across a 1983 vintage medic box on eBay that had been in a shed for more than 15-years.

Morin flew to California and dug the body out of the storage shed. It was loaded it onto a rental truck, and he drove back to Maine. He said the Dodge cab was in “immaculate condition,” with only 7,980 miles on the vehicle. The body, however, required some restoration work. Not to duplicate the LA County Fire Department lettering, Morin has “Lost Angel Fire Department, Rescue Squad and Paramedics” graphics added to the truck. He added, “Lost Angels are lost but not forgotten.” It took about six months to assemble the replica. Locating some equipment became quite a challenge. The “gutter mounts” for the Twinsonic light bar was one of the hardest to find. A Facebook friend was helpful for that find. Most of the equipment in the replica's compartments is from the 1970's and was on ambulances that were owned

in Morin's Sugarloaf Ambulance/Rescue business. A Pioneer “orange box” Telementry Unit was donated by some friends in New Jersey. He also has a telephone-style radio communications box similar to the one used in the TV show. The original Dodge for the series is located at the LA County Fire Museum. Morin is excited about his new adventure of showing off his masterpiece. The first showing was at the Fire House Grill in Auburn, Maine, in 2015. “Having given more than fortyyears in emergency medical services, I now have the ability to give back, by making the younger generation understand where us dinosaurs of EMS came from,” Morin said. - RON JEFFERS

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WOMEN IN FIREFIGHTING If you have photos you would like to see in our Women in Firefighting feature please upload them on our website or email them to


Vehicle shatters telephone pole


Cumru Township Firefighter Katie Spengler works the elevator during a high-rise drill.

On Sunday, May 15th at 3:38 P.M., Station-38 (Thorndale) along with Ambulance-46 (Minquas), were dispatched to the 300 block of Bondsville Rd. for a vehicle accident with unknown injuries. Deputy and Assistant-38 went enroute and were advised by the Chester County 911 Center that a vehicle had hit a telephone pole and another vehicle was now stuck under both the pole and live wires. Deputy-38 arrived first and confirmed that he had one vehicle with a pole on top of it, with a fe-

JUMP TO FILE #052416107 male still inside and unable to exit due to the power lines on top of the vehicle. Rescue-38 arrived and stood by until PECO arrived on scene, where they were able to communicate with the female the entire time. Traffic-38 and several fire police officers were also on scene and had the roadway shutdown so that the crews had a safe area to

operate and also to prevent any other civilians from getting injured. PECO arrived within the hour and quickly secured the power and the female was able to safely exit her vehicle with no injuries. Once PECO got the power secured, they were able to remove the pole and wires from the vehicle and the roadway was then reopened. Crews were on scene for a little over one hour. - MARK WALSH

Chaplains Corner: 911 CHAPLAINS CORNER Pastor Fernando Villicana

The three-digit telephone number "9-1-1" has been designated as the "Universal Emergency Number" for citizens throughout the United States. This “magic number” provides them with fast and easy access to emergency assistance. What a relief it is when our citizens hear the distant yelp of sirens as Emergency Services respond to their call for help. A sigh of relief and hope stirs in the heart of the patient as you arrive on scene. A full arrest, TC, physical rescue, pediatric problem, drowning, emergency child birth or other trauma finds the patient and loved ones in perhaps the worst situation of their lives. Upon arrival of an incident, Firefighters can see the desperation of a patient but simultaneously a look of confidence as they trust in the skill and professionalism of their rescuers.

I’m thankful God is with you on every call. And I’m also thankful that, when people require emergency assistance, God sends you. You are the answer to someone’s prayers! But have you ever cried out to the Lord during a difficult time in your life or that of a family member? A struggle in life. A trying time with your children, sickness or disease, a bitter divorce, financial collapse or perhaps a pain in your heart accumulated over the years due to a series of disappointments and discouragements. Have you ever looked up and cried out for help (911)? Due to God’s love demonstrated in Jesus Christ, we have the confidence that God hears, cares, and responds to His children in a time of need. In a crisis situation we can look to Jesus Christ with confidence that His expertise is sufficient to meet the need and calm the storm in our lives. Bible verse: “This poor man cried and the Lord heard him, and saved him out of all his troubles” (Psalm 34:4). Don’t ever forget that we all have immediate access to emergency services. All we have to do is “call Him up.”


Commercial building fire in Upper Hanover Township

PA: On Friday, May 27th at 11:43 A.M., East Greenville Fire Co., along with several other fire companies from the area, were dispatched to a building fire on Blommer Dr. in the township. It came in as an active fire in a piece of machinery. Due to the elements and excessive heat as well as humidity, a second-alarm was needed for extra manpower to take control of the fire. The fire was under control within 30 minutes and there were no injuries. Assisting the original fire companies on the dispatch were Pennsburg, Red Hill, Green Lane, Hereford, Siesholtzville, Upper Perk EMS and Fire Police from Pennsburg and Hereford.

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Basement fire on Birch Street Reading, PA - On Thursday, June 2nd, the Berks County Department of Emergency Services received a phone call reporting smoke at 1019 Birch Street. With C-Platoon companies turning out for box 9-02, an additional caller reported more smoke was pushing from JUMP TO FILE# the dwelling. Lad- 060316100 der-3 arrived at a two-and-a-halfstory, middle of the row with smoke showing. As firefighters forced the front door, a hose line was stretched to the front porch. Crews located a basement fire extending into the first-floor, while searches were made of the upper floors. The fire was placed under control in 30 minutes, with overhaul occurring in the void spaces where the fire had travelled. All searches were clear with no injuries reported. A dog was found unharmed and transferred to the ARL. The Fire Marshal's Office is investigating. Several probationary firefighters were on scene from the fire academy to assist. - JASON BATZ


Modena Firefighter’s make quick work of car fire


Reading Firefighters work this basement job at 1017 Birch Street in the Northeast.

On Saturday, May 21st, Chester County Station-37 (Modena) was dispatched to Ash St. for a reported car fire. Initial reports were of a fire coming from an engine compartment. Ambulance 37-1 arrived on scene first and had a fully involved vehicle with no exposure problems. Assistant-37 arrived shortly after, confirming the report and also requesting the State Police for assistance with an emotional vehicle owner. Engine 37-1 arrived and stretched a one-and-three-quarter handline, putting a quick knock down on the fire. Engine 372 arrived a short time later and assisted 37-1's crew.


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SUV drives through gas pumps, sparking fire Just before 5:30 P.M. on May 29th, an SUV driving across the McKees Rocks Bridge sped through an intersection and into a Citgo gas station parking lot. The SUV then proceeded to drive through the middle set of gas pumps, UMP TO FILE# slamming into a car J052916106 that was getting gas on the other side of the pumps. A fire then erupted, destroying the pumps and both vehicles. No injuries were reported as a result of the accident and fire. Several fire companies responded and quickly contained the fire. The McKees Rocks Bridge and Island Avenue in McKees Rocks were both shut down, causing major traffic delays in the area. There is no word on what may have caused the driver to lose control of his SUV. - ERIC RASMUSSEN

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The scene after an SUV drove through a set of gas pumps and igniting a fire in McKees Rocks.



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Commercial building fire in Upper Hanover Township On Sunday, May 15th, at 9:43 P.M., the East Greenville Fire Co., along with several local fire companies, were dispatched to a commercial building fire on Blommer Drive, in the Township. Upon arrival, East Greenville Fire Chief Jason Wilson, JUMP TO FILE# had an active fire in 051616114 the building, in the rear. He set up Command-38 and notified Montgomery County Fire Dispatch for a second-alarm for additional apparatus and manpower. Additional manpower was needed for the severity of the incident. Within one-and-a-halfhours, the fire was brought under control. Extensive overhaul was required. The cause of the fire and further details are unknown, pending the outcome of the investigation. Assisting on the original call were Pennsburg, Red Hill, Green Lane Fire Companies, Pennsburg Fire Police and Upper Perk EMS. On the second-alarm were Milford Twp. and Hereford Fire Companies. New Hanover Fire Company was brought in for stand-by at Pennsburg with their ladder. - TERRY RITZ


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The Man Behind Badge #711 ON THE BOOK SHELF

by John Malecky

The Man Behind Badge #711 By Thomas Cooney Available from: Barnes & Noble Price: $11.00 This is a paperback eight inches by five inches and has 169 pages. It was written by a man who put in 20 years with the New York City Fire Department. We have shown reviews of videos in this publication of the War Years, a period of time when the department saw its most work with fires and other emergencies. The author, a soft spoken, mild mannered man with a big heart, put his career in during many of those years and most of this time was spent at Ladder 30 in Harlem. His badge number (711) many times turned out to be lucky for him, sparing him from serious injury and even death. He was appointed in 1959 and retired in 1979. He writes about his memoirs

from the very beginning in training through the many fires and emergencies he responded to. He includes some family life and from the firehouse perspective, the brotherhood of firefighters and how they help each other out on and off the job. I remember when on the job whenever I needed a tradesman to help me out, I always canvassed the roster of my fire department to see who specialized in what trade. They were the first ones I considered. No different here. Some of the book tells of a unique part time job that he had while he was still a firefighter. Still other jobs that he held after retirement are touched on. The book has 32 remarkable chapters that should keep the reader turning pages. There are good times as well as tragic times written about. Many of the fires and rescues are described in detail. Many of the memorable tragic fires and incidents are touched on as well. I enjoyed reading this book so much that I did it twice! It is money well spent! Due to the sources that this book is available from and that it was reviewed sometime before the review’s printing, the price may vary slightly either way.

July, 2016


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If you have photos you would like to see in our Apparatus in Action feature please upload them on our website or email them to


Mahanoy City Tower-456 on the scene of a four-alarm fire in Shenandoah in June.

The scene as crews battle a stubborn fire in a 20-year-old silage.


Silo fire keeps crews busy for hours DAVE KEEN

New Buffalo Tanker-9 and Duncannon's Tanker-2 working a dump site at a recent fire in June.


Allentown's newest engine in service at a structure fire March 24th in the 300 block of Gordan St.


West End Rescue-993 (Mahanoy City) operates with multiple tools pulled at an incident in May.

Crews were dispatched to 212 Mine Rd. in Pike Township, PA at 2:23 P.M. on Monday, May 9th for an agricultural structure fire, with a silo reported to be on fire. Arriving crews found a large silo that was partially JUMP TO FILE# dismantled, with 051116112 approximately 30feet of 20-year-old compacted silage exposed from the top of the structure and on fire. Collapse was a very real possibility with this situation, so a collapse zone was established and multiple ground monitors as well as one aerial monitor were placed into service. A rural water supply/shuttle operation was established, with a local farm pond being used as a fill site for tankers. Two portable ponds were set up on scene to supply the engines and aerial. Over 80,000 gallons of water were used during this incident, all of which had to be shuttled roughly one mile to the scene by tankers. Eventually, an excavator was brought into the scene and the exposed silage was knocked safely to the ground, where it was thoroughly soaked with water and foam. Oley Fire Company had command of the incident and were assisted by numerous other companies from all around Berks County as well as the Salvation Army Disaster Response Unit, which provided food and beverages for the crews. - RICK BUGERA


An aerial monitor is used to fight a stubborn fire in a 20-year-old silage.

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The Human Factors, A Contributing Factor in firefighter Injury and Death - Part I STAYING SAFE

Chief Henry Campbell

This article and the next 2 following articles first appeared when I first started writing this column, Staying Safe, 15 years ago. I repeated it 6 years ago with slight modification, and feel it still holds true today as a leading cause of firefighter injury and death. It can serve as a refresher for senior firefighters and as a safety lesson for newer firefighters. The prime suspect for a majority of all unsafe acts and the resulting injuries and deaths in fire/EMS personnel can be relegated to “Human Factors.” This Human Factor or Human Error category includes many sub categories that contribute to unsafe and dangerous acts at the emergency scene. Included, but not limited to, the following: laziness, lack of concentration, poor judgment and failure to evaluate risks involved, not being prepared, insufficient training, taking foolish chances, complacency, macho or indestructible attitude, accidents don’t happen to me, refusing to seek help, emotions out of control, and the proverbial taking short cuts rather than following standard procedures. It is always easy to blame the equipment, apparatus, or changing fire conditions, but was it really the individual firefighter at fault? Laziness is probably the greatest cause for any type of unsafe act because indirectly it will almost appear as the root cause for the incident to have occurred. Most will deny laziness as the primary cause because of the guilt complex that goes along with being identified as being LAZY. Hey, I got news for you, we all suffer from the same problem and it has a bearing in our everyday life. Who gets up to change TV channels? How about the portable telephone? When I sit down to watch TV I make sure I have the TV remote, but more often then I like, I forget to bring the portable phone. In the height of laziness I hope my wife will come join me, and then I ask her to bring the phone, anything to keep from getting up! I am not alone. Fortunately the aforementioned are not life threatening, but if laziness carries over into our day-to-day chores

or when we respond as emergency responders, it can lead to injury. How about cleaning the leaves from the gutters? You put the ladder up and then hug it, getting as close as possible to the rungs while over reaching left and right as far as possible in order to keep from climbing down and repositioning the ladder. When we complete the gutter-cleaning chore what have we saved, having to move the ladder 2 or 3 more times, while giving no thought to our personal safety. You don’t have to fall from a great height to be injured, and the older you get the shorter the distance. Maybe, as one gets older, it would be safer to hire someone to clean the gutters for us. Think about it, if we do the same things at the emergency scene in order to save energy and footsteps, the risk of injury and death are far greater than being unable to change the TV channel. Are we wearing all our protective equipment, or have we forgotten or misplaced an item in the excitement? If we have, the chances are we are not going back to get it. How many times have we used the tool in hand as a poor substitute for the correct tool simply because it requires going back to the rig to obtain it? How often do we stand on a chair, table, or bed, or whatever else is available, to pull a ceiling with a halligan tool when a 6 foot hook is the preferred tool for the job? It is almost impossible to maintain ones balance walking on a bed, let alone perform some physical activity. How about ladder placement and height? Do we reposition the ladder, or get a ladder of greater length when it is the safe thing to do, or do we make do and hope nothing goes wrong. There are times the IC gives a specific assignment and we immediately come up with a better idea, usually one that reduces physical exertion and therefore easier to perform. Officers and Incident Commanders should be aware of counter proposals and their effect on the safety of personnel. The task may be made easier, but will it be as effective and safe? Counter proposals are usually shortcuts that eliminate a safe method of performing a task, and may become the contributing factors to injuries and death, and they generally start with being lazy. We know better, but laziness is driving us so therefore we overlook the added risk. To be continued next month. Till then, Stay Safe and God Bless!

Read previous columns from Henry Campbell and the rest of our staff at

Laugh your way to the bank with a stand-up comedy fund-raiser

Who needs to laugh more than the Fire Companies ---the first responders who deal with dangerous circumstances each and every day? There’s an innovative concept for fund-raising developed by Joey Novick, who is a stand-up comedian and the Fire Commissioner in his hometown: Stand-up comedy shows. Fire companies can get much-needed laughs and profit financially as well. Novick's company, ComedyWorks, provides all-star headline comedians from HBO, Comedy Central, Showtime, Last Comic Standing, and the Tonight Show. Novick’s been producing comedy shows since 1977, and has experience producing shows with such comedians as Jerry Seinfeld, Rosie O’Donnell, Larry The Cable Guy, and Tim Allen. "The comedians were very funny, and very professional," wrote Mark Bruhmuller, Fire Chief of the Churchtown Fire Company of New York. “Joey Novick did an excellent job. Everybody loves to laugh, and it's a great deal of fun." ComedyWorks produces more than 300 shows a year, almost 150 of those for emergency service organizations. The money these shows can

VENDOR TIDBITS Notes from the emergency service business community

raise varies, depending on things like the number of tickets sold, how they're priced, the amount spent on promotion and whether food and drink are available. "Mostly companies produce shows in their own facilities, which may hold 300–400 people," says Novick. "We'll put together a show for them that will bring in comedians from major comedy clubs, with a headliner from HBO, Comedy Central, or the Tonight Show. The feature performer will be someone who's headlined the comedy circuit: Catch a Rising Star, the Improv, the Comedy Store. The host of the show will be a comedian who's very high-energy, like a gameshow host, to get the audience warmed up. A triple headliner show!” The Somerset Fire Company of New Jersey produces two fundraisers a year through ComedyWorks. "We've done about ten shows so far, and it's been great," says Mike Rein-

beck, who coordinates the shows for the 65-member volunteer department. "A friend of mine who had used Joey told me, 'This guy books really good acts.' So, we did the first show, everything was great, and we've been doing shows with Joey ever since." "I find their people to be very funny," agrees Adam Hubney, chief of the Atlantic Highlands Volunteer Fire Department in New Jersey, which books comedians through ComedyWorks for its annual dinner. "We have a professional comedy club in our county, and the quality is just as good." Comedy Works provides a 30-page ‘How-To’ guide that assists organizations through the comedy show production and warns of mistakes to avoid. "We make sure they follow everything in the guide," says Novick. "If a company has never done this before, it gives you everything from you need to know. We make sure that things get done right. Clients who follow the guide always do very well and tend to make money.” For information on Comedy Works, call 1 (888) 782-4589, go to or e-mail

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Students participate in a table top exercise of a tractor rollover using scale tools on Saturday, June 18th at the Fisherville Volunteer Fire Company No.1.


Firefighters prepare to move down a hallway in the Sencit Apartments to attack a simulated fire conducted by the Cumru FD in June.

Reading Firefighters work to lift a 16-ton bus with high-pressure airbags during a drill in June.



LPFD Lieutenant Seamans was the Incident Commander for this burn session held at the Montgomery County Fire Academy in May.


Members retrieving and lowering the victim to safety outside during an RIT drill held on June 2nd.


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City of Pittsburgh Fire Chief Daryl Jones working a 2-alarm fire.


NFVFC Co-17 crews operating inside CAM Superline dumpster fire in April.


Fourteen homes were destroyed with addresses on three different streets in Shenandoah, as a fast moving four-alarm fire struck the Eastside of the borough.

Mahanoy City Tower-456 descends from the roof of a row of homes that caught fire in Ashland. In the bucket are Lieutenant Paul Brutto (left) and Firefighter Tom Ward Jr (right).

Baurstown Station-259 Assistant Chief Mike Campbell working at the row house fire in Millvale.

Mahanoy City Firefighter Francis Bowman works a blitz fire as crews work to contain a fire in Shenandoah that eventually brought four-alarms to the scene.





July, 2016

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Captain Jake Griffie Co. 47 Newville Fire Co. gets some action on a recent building fire in Upper Mifflin Township.


Cumru Firefighter Kyle Norbury.



Millvale 191 Assistant Chief Karl Cavanaugh takes command of the row house fire on Mother's Day.


Firefighter Josh Green during a garage fire on 10th Street in Reading.


Berkley Hills Station-247 Assistant Chief Ed Carlino (Yellow) and Ross-West View EMS Operations Supervisor Steve Kline (Blue), work on Mother's Day at the Millvale Row House Fire.

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If you have photos for Little Big Guys please upload them on our website or email them to


Good Intent Hose Company of Llewellyn operates Utility 03-70. The "Brutlity" is a 2009 Ford F550 with a Rosenbauer body that carries 300 gallons of water with a 300 GPM pump.


Mother’s Day fire displaces 17

The Summit Station Fire Company of Wayne Township operates Brush 34-47. "Attack 34" is a 2014 Dodge 5500 / 1st Attack that carries 350 gallons of water with a 300 GPM pump. J. KRIESHER

At 7:47 A.M. on May 8th, firefighters were dispatched to the 400 block of Sample Street in the Borough of Millvale for a reported structure fire. Fire units arrived to find a twoand-a-half story, eight-unit row house with heavy smoke showing from the second-floor. Due to the common roof attaching all of the homes, the fire quickly spread and multiple alarms were requested. Firefighters aggressively attacked the fire from both the front

JUMP TO FILE #051016100 and rear of the structure and the fire was placed under control in less than two hours. Five of the units sustained substantial fire damage and three units sustained smoke and water damage. The final unit cleared the scene at 3:11 P.M. A total of 18 volunteer fire departments, along with a full firstalarm structure assignment from the

City of Pittsburgh, responded to the fire. A total of 13 adults and four children were displaced by the fire. The American Red Cross was called to assist those families displaced. One firefighter was treated for burns, but no civilians were injured. The cause of the fire is being investigated by the Allegheny County Fire Marshal’s Office. - ERIC RASMUSSEN

Blooming Grove's 25 Brush, 1952 Studebaker with twin steer, 500 gpm pump and 500 gallon water tank. It is part of the Cooperative Mutual Aid Fire Suppression, Pennsylvania Bureau of Forestry, Department of Conservation and Natural resources. JOHN M. MALECKY


Single vehicle crash on I-80 claims one life and sends one to hospital FRANK ROBINSON

Mount Gretna Fire Department utilizes a 2000 Ford/E-One as a Rescue Unit.

On Saturday, June 18th, a single vehicle crash on Interstate-80 at the 276-mile-marker claimed the life of a young man. The vehicle was traveling west on the interstate when it left the highway and struck a tree. The passenger was killed on impact. The driver was extricated from the wreckage and treated by Lake Harmony Ambulance and flown to an area hospital. PSP's reconstruction team set up and performed a complete reconstruction of the accident scene. Once complete, "All Points Towing" assisted with the extrication of the passenger. Rescue and Engine-17 were on scene for over four hours.

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Two large brush fires strike Schuylkill County Around 2:15 P.M. on Sunday, April 24th, the Pottsville Bureau of Fire was dispatched to investigate smoke and a possible brush fire on Peach Mountain Road. Assistant Chief P-4 went responding and was advised of additional calls reporting a brush fire near Peach JUMP TO FILE# Mountain Road and 060616123 Mountain Drive. A large column of smoke was seen from miles away as crews from Stations 30 and 40 gathered to respond. Engines 32 and 41 arrived to find a large brush fire a few hundred yards off the roadway. Brush-42 arrived on the scene and was sent down a pole line in the area to find the fire. Captain-35 also went down the pole line and found a large amount of natural cover on fire off the side of the pole line. St. Clair Brush-705 was added to the call. Units on scene continued to try to access the fire in an area that had many small off-road vehicle paths in the area. Due to the fire still spreading, P-4 requested additional units to the scene. These additions included brush units from Llewellyn, Mount Carbon and Summit Station. Multiple units from Forestry were on scene as well as a reconnaissance plane that was flying over-

head to give ground units information on the movement of the fire. Lines were stretched off Brush42, Brush-705 and Utility 03-70 along the pole line and firefighters began to make good progress on the fire. Brush 03-40 and Mount Carbon units were sent to the opposite side of the fire and were able to contain the head of the fire. Engine-41 staged at a nearby hydrant on Peach Mountain and filled brush units with water after they emptied onto the fire. About one hour into the fire, crews were beginning to mop up when a large column of thick smoke was noticed to the East. County was notified by Command of the smoke column, who stated they were also receiving calls for a brush fire in Blythe Township. Districts 2 (Blythe Twp.) and 54 (New Philadelphia), were dispatched the the Silvercreek Road area of Blythe Township for a brush fire. Chief-02 and Chief 54-01 both went responding and advised County of a large brush fire. Tuscarora Fire was requested to the scene. Units fought a large brush fire North of New Philadelphia for hours. Multiple Forestry crews were called in to help battle the blaze before it was brought under control. - JC KRIESHER


Saint Clair Brush-705 arrives on the scene of a brush fire outside Pottsville that took crews nearly one hour to contain.

1ST Responder Newspaper - PA


One car rollover in Lehigh On Thursday, May 12th at 4:56 P.M. the East Greenville Fire Co. was dispatched along with Lower Milford Fire Co. to a one-car rollover on Kings Highway South, in Lehigh County. Upon arrival, Chief-38 was notified about a male with head injuries. Squad-38 arrived on the scene before Lower Milford Apparatus and took off a handline, dousing the SUV. Assisting on the scene were PA State Police, an EMS unit from Lehigh County and Lower Milford Fire Police.

Vehicle News


July, 2016


McAdoo Firefighters arrived on scene of this house in Kelayres to find heavy smoke showing with a working fire in the kitchen. A second-alarm was struck as firefighters made entry and put a quick hit on the fire.

McAdoo strikes second-alarm for house fire SCHUYLKILL COUNTY, PA – Just after noon on Friday, May 20th, Schuylkill County 9-1-1 dispatched Fire District-49 (McAdoo), to 93rd Street in the Kelayres section of Kline Township for a house on fire. Quint 49-22, who was out on a public service detail, went responding immediately after dispatch and was advised of a frantic caller reporting her house on fire and everyone was to be out of the building. The Quint was on scene shortly after and confirmed a working fire with heavy smoke showing from a two-and-a-half-story, end-of-row dwelling. Hazle Twp. Fire and Rescue was requested to be dispatched to assist. Engine 49-15 pulled in behind the Quint as first arriving crews were stretching a line to the front door. The Engine supplied the Quint with water while Engine 49-11 was directed to

JUMP TO FILE #060616125 lay supply line on Market Street into the scene. Chief 49-07 arrived on the scene and assumed command, requesting a second-alarm to the scene. Firefighters found fire on the first-floor kitchen upon entering the front door. A second line was stretched to the rear of the building and crews began to make a good knock on the fire. Additional crews arrived on the scene and began to open up and check for extension. Minor extension was found on the second-floor, above the kitchen, and a line was stretched to extinguish the fire. Mahanoy City Fire Department was dispatched as part of the secondalarm for it's Rapid Intervention Team, calling for a response from

Engine -451 and Rescue-993. Engine-451 set up RIT in the front of the building, however; Rescue-993 was redirected to an accident on Interstate-81 while responding to the fire. Hazle Township Tower-107 took position on the A/B corner and readied itself for the possibility of flying to the roof. Firefighters from Sheppton and West Hazleton entered the building and continued to check for extension on the second-floor and attic, which proved to be clear. APTS Medic-11 was on the scene providing water and checking the vital signs of firefighters who exited the building. The fire was placed under control within a half-hour and a State Police Fire Marshal was requested to the scene to help with investigating the cause of the fire. - JC KRIESHER


Temple Fire Dept. will be placing this 2016 Spartan EVR into service soon, (2000GPM/750/20Foam).

Reading FF's Tom Leszczynski and Scott Lerch work the door.


Reading Firefighters raise $2400 for Muscular Dystrophy LUKE PATTERSON

Western Berks Fire Dept. has placed a 2016 Pierce Velocity 105-ft ladder, (200gpm/500/40 foam and CAF system) into service.

The Reading Firefighters kicked off their first "Boot Drive" for 2016 on Friday, May 13th, standing at the doors of the WAWA at 11th & Rockland Street. After being rained out twice, they made the decision to make the most of the day to raise money for the Muscular Dystrophy Charity. They raised nearly $2,400 and were also able to assist a motorist with a flat tire. Great job Reading!


July, 2016

1ST Responder Newspaper - PA


Pittsburgh firefighters battle 2-alarm blaze in former business

On the afternoon of May 11th around 4 P.M., City of Pittsburgh firefighters were dispatched to a commercial structure fire located in a building along Hazelwood Avenue in the city's Greenfield section that formerly housed Carlini Monument Company. Arriving units found heavy smoke and fire through the roof and a 2nd-alarm was quickly requested. The fire was quickly brought under control in under one hour. The building sustained heavy damage and a building inspector was called to the scene to determine if the building would have to immediately be razed. No firefighters were injured and the cause of the fire is now under investigation.


Accident with injuries in Upper Hanover Twp. On June 22nd at 2:49 P.M., East Greenville Fire Co. was dispatched to an accident with injuries on Jacobs Sawmill Rd. and Kutztown Rd. The severity of the injuries are unknown. Bally and Upper Perk EMS responded to the scene. Assisting the fire company were Hereford Fire Police and PA State Police.


Firefighters arrived on scene in Branondville to find a garage fully involved, with heavy fire also showing from a neighbor dwelling.

Brandonville garage fire ignites neighboring dwelling SCHUYLKILL COUNTY, PA – At 5:15 A.M. on Sunday, May 8th, Schuylkill County 9-1-1 sent a first-alarm to the area of 57 Main Boulevard in the Brandonville section of East Union Township for a reported garage on fire. Chief 09-02 went responding and was advised of two calls reporting a garage fire, with one caller reporting hearing a bang and then saw fire from the garage. While responding, an additional call was received, reporting a fully involved garage. The Chief arrived on scene and confirmed a well involved single-story, detached garage with heavy fire also showing from the exposure on the “D” side of a two-story, vacant dwelling. With the working fire confirmed, East Union Twp. Command was established. Engine 09-10 was directed to position at the "A/B" and stretch a two-and-a-half inch line off the rear. Shenandoah Squirt-745 was directed to take the address of the dwelling and stretch a hand line to the exterior as well. With no hydrants in the area, Ringtown Tanker 30-35 was directed to drop it's portable pond next to the engine and begin a water shuttle. Shenandoah Heights Engine-881 was directed to set up a fill site at the water bottling plant on Spring Water Blvd. Engine 30-10 arrived and attempted to draft from the portable pond and feed the additional units on scene, but suffered from an equipment malfunction. This led to Nuremberg Ladder-581, who had just nosed into the "A/B" corner, to reposition and begin to draft from the portable pond. Mahanoy City Engine-454 positioned behind the Squirt and stretched an additional hand line

JUMP TO FILE #051116120 to the rear. Mahanoy City Rescue993 staged on Main Boulevard and established a Rapid Intervention Team. Due to some issues establishing the fill site and the equipment failure at the portable pond, water supply was not steady throughout the first stages of the incident. Nuremberg Tanker-585 nursed it's water into the Squirt while crews were repositioning the water supply. Fire continued to tear through the house and began to travel into an attached garage on the “D” side of the dwelling. With no response from Tanker759 and Tanker 09-30 on the way to the scene, Command requested a first-alarm tanker task force be dispatched to the scene. The tankers dispatched included Aristes, Hazle Twp., Hometown, Ryan Twp. and Quakake. Nuremberg’s second tanker also re-

sponded to the scene. As a constant water supply was established, crews stretched additional lines off the Squirt, to the front and the side of the dwelling. The master stream was also used off the Squirt as well as the front gun on Engine-454. The bulk of the fire was knocked down by 6 A.M. Crews continued to pour water onto the buildings and overhaul what pieces of the buildings they could. Firefighters continued to work through the morning and had the fire completely under control around 7 A.M. A State Police Fire Marshal was called in to the scene to help determine the cause of the blaze. As all of the hot spots were doused by crews, tankers began to be released from the scene and firefighters began to pick up their hoses. All units were clear of the scene by 9 A.M. - JC KRIESHER


1ST Responder Newspaper - PA

July, 2016


Three alarms and special calls for Ashland row home fire SCHUYLKILL COUNTY, PA – Just after 7 A.M. on Friday, May 20th, Schuylkill County 9-11 dispatched Fire Districts 38 (Ashland) and 45 (Girardville) to 421 West Center Street in Ashland for a reported house fire. A second-alarm was quickly struck as Chief 38-02 arrived on the scene JUMP TO FILE# 060616124 and found heavy smoke showing from a two-and-ahalf-story residence, with exposures attached on both sides. The second-alarm brought units from Altamont, Englewood, Gordon and Mount Carmel. Ladder 38-25 took the address and set up for roof operations while Engine 38-15 secured a water supply at 5th and Chestnut Streets. American Hose Engine 38-10 proceeded to the rear of the row on Chestnut Street and secured a water supply at 4th and Chestnut. Engine 38-10 found heavy fire to the rear of the row and stretched lines through the backyard. Girardville Engine 4510 was directed to the front of the building and they also secured a water supply and began to stretch lines to the interior. Fire conditions continued to worsen and the manpower pool was not growing, which prompted Command to request a third-alarm to the scene. The third-alarm brought Squirt-745 and Engine-742 from Shenandoah, Tower-456 and a Rapid Intervention Team from Mahanoy City, and an Engine from Wilburton. Lavelle Engine 04-12 was also added as they were clearing another incident in their area. Mount Carmel Truck-2 was directed to position behind 38-25 and set up for operation while Tower-456 and Squirt-745 were sent to the front of 38-25 to set their crews to the roof to open up. Englewood Engine-369 secured an additional water supply behind Truck-2 as third-alarm units began to stage on Center Street and send their manpower to the scene. Additional RIT from Pottsville and Shamokin were requested to the scene as was manpower from Minersville. Pottsville Rescue-63 set up RIT in the front of the building and then were assisted by Shamokin Rescue-62. Interior firefighters continued to work inside all three buildings from the front while roof crews opened up and let the brown smoke exit the building. Additional firefighters continued to work on the back side of the row and contain fire in extensions of the buildings and into the yards. Mahanoy City set up their RIT in a backyard. About one hour into the incident, the smoke began to dissipate and turned into steam exiting from the building. Firefighters pulled out two dogs from the


Smoke billows from three buildings damaged by a fire on West Center Street Street in Ashland. The fire required three-alarms plus specials calls to the scene before it was brought under control.

FIREFIGHTER PROFILES If your department has photos you would like to see in our “Firefighter Profiles” feature, please upload them on our website, or email them to

Firefighters at the scene of a three-alarm fire in Ashland on May 20th.


buildings and tried to resuscitate them with oxygen and CPR, but unfortunately both dogs succumbed to their injuries. The fire was placed under control at 8:30 A.M. At the 80-minute PAR check, crews began to pick up some of their equipment and out of town companies were ready to be released. At the

100-minute PAR check, Command began to release companies from the scene and PAR checks were terminated. Ashland crews remained on the scene into the early afternoon to mop up hot spots and investigate the cause of the fire. - JC KRIESHER


Reading Paramedic Firefighter Nik Knauer retires after 15 years of service.


July, 2016

1ST Responder Newspaper - PA

Fatal accident on Route-30 Bypass in Chester County On Friday, May 20th at 9:12 P.M., Station-38 (Thorndale) along with Ambulance-41 (Coatesville), were dispatched JUMP TO FILE #052416108

to the Route-30 Bypass Westbound, west of Route-340 for an accident with unknown injuries. Initial reports were of a three vehicle accident blocking with unknown injuries, however; that quickly changed. The Chester County 911 Center began to get numerous calls from witnesses reporting a serious accident with injuries. At that time, the assignment was upgraded to an Accident Reported Serious, adding MICU46 (Minquas) to the assignment. Deputy-38 and Ambulance41 were the first on scene. Ambulance-41 immediately reported that they had heavy entrapment and after quickly checking the scene, it was determined that they needed more EMS units to the scene for several injuries. Two additional ALS units and a BLS unit were dispatched to the scene to assist. Deputy-38 confirmed that they had heavy entrapment and upon arrival of Rescue-38, the crew was to go into service with extrication efforts. Deputy-38 also requested a helicopter be placed on standby as well. Due to JeffStat-3 being out of service on another call, MedEvac-3 was dispatched and asked to fly to the helipad at Brandywine Hospital to stage there. Upon the arrival of the rescue, due to the heavy traffic which was stopped because of the accident, the crew was not able to make it all the way up to the scene with the truck. The crew members had to grab the portable cutters and generators and walk the equipment up the hill and to the vehicle to begin extrication. While crews were working on that vehicle, EMS and other firefighters were checking on other vehicles and determined that they had entrapment in another vehicle as well. At that time, Deputy-38 requested Rescue-45 (Alert Fire Company) to the scene to assist. While all of this was going on, Thorndale Fire Police were busy trying to shut down the highway in both directions to not only keep Fire/EMS and Police on scene safe, but to also allow other apparatus to access

the scene in a quicker manner. Fire Police Captain Miller (3830), was operating Traffic-38 and immediately was able to shut down the westbound side of the bypass at Route-340, as Fire Police Officer Mostyn assisted and closed the on-ramps with Utility-38. As more fire police from the company arrived, they were able to totally shut down the westbound lanes. Squad-38 also made the response and went to the eastbound side, by Reeceville Rd., and shut that down as well so that apparatus was able to travel the wrong way on the eastbound side to get closer to the scene. It was determined that due to the severity of the incident, the highway would need to be closed from Route-82 to Route-340, on both sides and that more fire police would be needed. At that time, a fire police task force was dispatched, bringing fire police from 35, 39, 41/43, 44 and 45/46. Stations 44 and 39 were also requested for their portable light towers to help light up the scene for the police investigation. Rescue-45 arrived on scene and were advised to travel the wrong way on the eastbound side to gain better access and assist with the second entrapment. EMS units were also advised to do the same so that they could access and leave the scene with little problems. Two of the victims were transported to a local trauma center and one other victim was transported to a local hospital. MedEvac-3 was determined to not be needed and was cancelled by EMS. Crews were faced with a very difficult scene, with two vehicles involving heavy entrapment as well as a large amount of debris all over the roadway and heavy traffic in the area. Unfortunately, one subject was determined by EMS to be DOA on the scene. Due to the fatality and severity of the accident, P.A. State Police had to do a full accident investigation and reconstruction, therefore both the eastbound and westbound lanes were closed for almost seven hours. The roadway was reopened at 3:45 A.M. Due to the graphic nature of the scene, no photos will be posted. - MARK WALSH

Apartment fire held in check On June 13th, Perry County Communications alerted first-due units along with mutual aid for an apartment fire. Duncannon Squad2 arrived with smoke showing from the rear of a three-story apart- JUMP TO FILE# ment building and 062416104 requested a working fire dispatch. Duncannon's squad crew pulled a 200foot, one-and-threequarter-inch attack line and quickly extinguished the fire in a utility room on side "Charlie" of the building. DFC was assisted on scene by units from New Buffalo, Marysville, Northeast Fire & Rescue and Halifax Fire Departments. - DYLAN HOOVER

Squad-2 making entry.




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1ST Responder Newspaper - PA

July, 2016



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1ST Responder Newspaper - PA




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1st Responder PA July Edition  

1st Responder PA July Edition