3 Alarm Factory Fire Rages Out-of-Control In Bethlehem, PA.
March 25, 2015 at 4:51pm
At 03:55 Bethlehem City 9-1-1 Center started receiving calls for smoke in the area of the 200 block of West Fairview Street sending Engines 6, 9, 5, Ladder 2 and Truck 2. As companies are investigating, Police report a haze in the area of Rt. 378 and another call reporting smoke on Rt. 378.
Truck 2 goes to the west side of Route 378 where the smoke is heavier. At 04:01, Bethlehem dispatchers send Engine 7 and Ladder 1 to 702 Main Street for the alarm system with a strange odor. 405 is reporting a large blanket of smoke in this part of the city and advises the alarm call is probably related.
The dispatch center checked with surrounding communities for fires. Chief 405 requested a wind check and the airport said winds were calm. All companies continue to investigate as of 04:05.
At 04:07 Engine 6 finds and reports a commercial building fire in the 1100 block of Mauch Chunk Road.
Truck 2 (405) goes on scene reporting smoke from the roof of a metal fabricating shop, a 2-story 100x400 building. At 4:12 he strikes the 2nd alarm as conditions rapidly deteriorate.
The 3rd alarm is struck sending the last engine available in the city, Engine 3, to the fire scene. Tower Ladder 2 positions in a parking lot on the "Bravo" side of the building. Ladder 1 is positioned in the street in front of the building. A hand line is stretched into the building but shortly after, 405 evacuates the building as fire conditions worsen.
Multiple ground monitors and aerial streams are in operation. Allentown's Ladder 2 is special-called to the fire scene as a 3rd ladder pipe is needed.
The fire burns out of control for several hours. The smoke drifted into the city of Allentown. By 09:00, the fire was darkened down.
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