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hello, i'm a camden county junior firefighter. I noticed that one of the choices was '10 minutes or more' Does that situation actually happen down in Atlantic county?
Fortunately I havenít heard of any that do. Although some of our more rural departments sometimes have a long response time during the day due to most of there members working out of town. I have heard some rescue squads with take up to 15 minutes to sign a crew on plus another 5 to 10 minutes traveling.
August 20, 2003
Fire forces casino floor evacuation at Hilton
By BRIDGET MURPHY Staff Writer, (609) 272-7257, AC Press
ATLANTIC CITY - A fire that began in a third-floor laundry room sparked an evacuation of the Atlantic City Hilton's casino floor Tuesday.
Firefighters from two engine companies and one ladder company responded to the scene at about 2 a.m.
They put out the fire in about 10 minutes and spent about the next 90 minutes clearing smoke from the facility, Battalion Chief Dennis Brooks said.
Sprinklers had activated in the laundry room, but the water pressure was not enough to put out the flames before firefighters arrived.
Smoke also spread to a nearby pool deck area, where sprinklers also came on, sending sediment from the devices into the pool. Several dozen patrons also were evacuated from hotel rooms in the immediate area, according to fire officials.
Casino patrons and employees were flowing out of the Hilton when Brooks pulled up to the casino, where the smell of smoke had carried outside.
Fire officials estimated property damage at about $25,000 but said the casino's profit losses from the 45-minute-long floor evacuation were unknown.
Detective Richie Johnson is investigating the cause of the fire, which is believed to be accidental.
August 25, 2003
Roofing material catches fire at Richard Stockton College
By JOHN BRAND Staff Writer, (609) 272-7275
GALLOWAY - About 40 firefighters searched for an electrical fire Sunday at the Richard Stockton College of New Jersey, but their efforts were fruitless.
What looked, smelled and seemed like an electrical fire was actually a small blaze on the roof of the cafeteria at the college's N Wing, which is undergoing major renovations.
It took firefighters about an hour to locate the fire and about 20 minutes to extinguish it, Galloway Fire Chief Brian Berchtold said Sunday.
He said construction workers were on the roof during the day, but had left sometime before 2:30 p.m., when the fire was reported.
Berchtold said he is still investigating what ignited roofing materials on top of the roof.
When firefighters arrived on the scene, there was no visible smoke outside N Wing, but it was smoky and hazy inside the building, the chief said
The cafeteria sustained minor water damage to its ceiling. There were no injuries or disruption of the college's normal operations, Berchtold said.
Firefighters from Pomona, Germania and Bayview responded to the scene, Berchtold said.
He said the South Egg Harbor Township Fire Department covered the west end of Galloway Township while the fire was being investigated.
The Galloway Ambulance Squad was on standby and the Stockton Police also were on the scene, the fire chief said.
September 1, 2003
Firefighters rescue mom, two children trapped in elevator at the Borgata
By MARK TYLER Staff Writer, (609) 272-7238, E-Mail
ATLANTIC CITY - As Dr. Richard Greenberg lounged by the pool at the Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa on Saturday, his wife and two children stood trapped in an elevator.
"Two kids in a closed space with limited air is not a pleasant situation," Greenberg, of Albany, N.Y., said.
"My wife said the lights were on and the elevator was vibrating up and down. It was shaking. She was saying, 'Hold on.' My son started to scream. It was like a ride at Six Flags," Greenberg said Sunday.
The hotel staff worked for more than 40 minutes to get Greenberg's family out of the elevator before calling the Atlantic City Fire Department, Greenberg said.
"My gripe is that the Fire Department wasn't called sooner," Greenberg said. "Once (the hotel staff) realized their backup system didn't work, they should have called the Fire Department. That was my main concern."
Michael Facenda, director of Marketing Services for the Borgata, said the staff followed the company's procedures and kept in constant communication with those inside the elevator.
"We regret that it happened, but we did the best that we could with the situation," Facenda said.
The Fire Department was called at 6:36 p.m. and was on scene by 6:44 p.m., fire officials said.
Capt. Joe Heckmann, and Firefighters Lionel Fonville, Thomas Crozier-Carole and Brian Wiener responded with Ladder Company 1.
"It took maybe about 10 minutes (to get them out of the elevator). It's pretty routine," Heckmann said. "I always tell people to make the casino give you dinner or a free room and a show."
But Greenberg said he was oblivious to the situation early on.
Greenberg said the hotel staff called his room and when his 16-year-old son told them that his father was at the pool, no one came to the pool to get him.
"My wife and two kids were in a terror," Greenberg said. "When I did find out I was running throughout the hotel not knowing what to do. I was wondering where they were and what I could do."
He said the whole situation made him angry and the complimentary dinner that the casino offered his family didn't make up for the inconvenience because they should have called the Fire Department as soon as there was a problem.
"It was due to a storm, an act of God," Facenda said of the elevator getting stuck. "We're very happy that everyone got out safely."
September 8, 2003
Fire closes Somers Point restaurant
By MARK TYLER Staff Writer, (609) 272-7238, E-Mail
SOMERS POINT - The Golden Point Chinese Restaurant in Somers Point Plaza was shut down Saturday afternoon after workers there extinguished a grease fire without calling the Fire Department.
Employees of PayLess Shoe Source, the restaurant's next-door neighbor, called the fire department when their building began to fill up with smoke, Somers Point Volunteer Fire Department Chief Frank Denan said.
"If we were not called, the Board of Health would have never been notified, and naturally, they wouldn't be closed for three days," Denan said. "When we got called, they were already in the process of cleaning up their kitchen."
The 4:30 p.m. fire started on an oven hood, Denan said.
"There was no damage that was done at all," Denan said.
The Fire Department called the Board of Health. The Board of Health has required the restaurant to clean or replace its oven hoods.
"They're not allowed to be opened until they get their hoods cleaned of excessive grease and have a hood inspection," Denan said.
He said that the restaurant has a wet fire suppression system that is matched by a wet fire extinguisher system.
"They used improper fire extinguishers," Denan said. "The wet system smothers the fire for a grease fire. They grabbed a dry chemical extinguisher. It just pushed the grease. Then they grabbed the proper fire extinguishers."
Denan said 18 firefighters responded, including two engines, one rescue truck and one ladder truck.
No summons have been issued at this time, Denan said.
September 10, 2003
By MARK TYLER Staff Writer, AC Press (609) 272-7238, E-Mail
PLEASANTVILLE - A two-alarm blaze ripped through a West Brighton Avenue duplex Tuesday, displacing a mother and her four children, Fire Department officials said.
The fire at 127 Brighton Ave., which broke out at 2:07 p.m., was under control just before 3 p.m., but firefighters stayed on the scene for another hour and fifteen minutes making sure the blaze was completely out.
"When I arrived I had heavy fire at the rear of the building on both the first-floor apartment and the second-floor apartment extending into the attic," Deputy Chief Mike Corbo said. "It is apparently accidental. But it is still under investigation."
Carmella Hood and her four children, who range in age from 8 to 20 years old, had to be relocated by the American Red Cross, Corbo said.
"Damage was confined to the rear third of the building, first and second floors and the attic," Corbo said. "There was heavy smoke damage throughout the building."
Corbo said the damage estimate stands at $75,000.
Two engines, one ladder truck and an ambulance from Pleasantville responded to the scene. One engine from Absecon also responded as a mutual aid. Meanwhile, the Farmington Volunteer Fire Department provided cover at the Pleasantville Fire Department. There were 23 firefighters on scene, Corbo said.
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September 11, 2003
Firefighters douse electrical blaze at A.C. gold shop
By BRIDGET MURPHY Staff Writer, (609) 272-7257, E-Mail
ATLANTIC CITY - Firefighters battled a smoky electrical fire that spread through the walls of a cash-for-gold shop adjacent to Caesars Atlantic City's garage Wednesday, closing part of Missouri and Pacific avenues for about an hour.
About 20 firefighters responded to the 8:55 a.m. alarm, with the first engine company arriving three minutes later to find smoke coming from the two-story building's rear eaves.
They chased the fire through walls in the first and second floors in the back of 31 S. Missouri Ave., controlling it in 50 minutes, acting Battalion Chief Bill McGrail said.
The fire was concentrated in the area around a pipe that extended from the first-floor bathroom inside M&M Gold and Silver, to the bathroom in the newly remodeled upstairs apartment used by the store's owner, identified by authorities as Alex Manelis.
Fire officials believe the blaze was accidental. No one was hurt and fire officials estimated damage to the building at $25,000.
Firefighters had trouble getting in the building at first because of security measures taken to prevent burglaries of the rings, watches, necklaces and other valuables stored in the counters inside, McGrail said.
But store manager Leo Voronchuk, whom officials said was inside when the fire broke out, unlocked the building's front door after watching the firefighters struggle to get inside. They forced entry to the second-floor apartment.
"The companies did a tremendous job finding the seat of the fire," McGrail said. "It was just a stubborn fire."
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