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2006 Archives

Jan      Feb      Mar      Apr      May      Jun      Jul      Aug      Sep      Oct      Nov      Dec

December 17th - Today the River Road Fire Company was in the holiday spirit having our annual Santa Run, escorting Santa around the district. During the the journey, we came across several future firefighters. Thanks to everyone who made the event possible.

   

November 11th - At around 0400 hours the River Road Fire Company was requested in the area of River Road and Hoes Lane West for the MVA with an overturned vehicle. Upon arrival crews found a victim with fatal injuries. Fire units stood by to provide traffic control and assist the police accident investigation team with lighting. Upon completion of the investigation, crews removed the vehicles door to gain access to the victim. Units cleared up around 0730 hours and returned to quarters.   

November 9th - Today at 1730 hours the River Road Fire Company responded for a fire standby at the Rutgers University Football Stadium for the nationally televised game where the #15 Rutgers Scarlet Knights upset the #3 Louisville Cardinals, 28-25. The game was one of the biggest games in Rutgers football history with a record breaking crowd in attendance of 44,111. Engine 652, Rescue 655, and Unit 658 were on hand with Chief of Department Florek, Asst. Chief Smolko, Lt. Maas, and Firefighters Abraham, Barnoski, J. Cercatore, P. Cercatore, Fiorino, Flasser, N. Recine, Simon, and Sorrentino. River Road Fire assisted Rutgers University Emergency Services with fire protection as they have done for every Rutgers home game in recent history. During the game, River Road Fire responded to numerous calls including a reported unknown type fire and a motor vehicle accident. Several other local, county, state, and federal agencies were involved in the massive coordination for the event. Several celebrities and dignitaries were in attendance as well.  All units cleared up around 0100hrs.

  

 

 

November 8th - At around 1400 hours the River Road Fire Company was requested in the are of River Road near the deer pens located within Johnson's park for the reported car into a pole. Upon arrival crews found a vehicle which had taken down a telephone pole and a dump truck in the roadway. No extrication was required so crews remained on scene to block traffic as the involved vehicles were removed from the roadway by the wrecker. Units cleared up around 1445 hours.

 

November 4th - At around 0930 hours the River Road Fire Company participated in its annual drill at the Colgate-Palmolive Technologies Corporation off of River Road.  The scenario took place on a mother-daughter day at the office. A chemical accident occurred in the loading dock area followed by fumes spreading throughout the rest of the building, incapacitating several of the mothers and daughters.  River Road Engine 652 and Truck 656 responded with Asst. Chief J. Smolko and Firefighters Barnoski, J. Cercatore, P. Cercatore, Flasser, Keuntsner, Simon, and Sorrentino. Upon arrival Engine 652 setup a mass decontamination shower and also performed search and rescue.  Members rescued all 22 patients located inside the building.  The drill was labeled a success and companies cleared up around 1200hrs. Special thanks to Colgate for allowing the use of their facility and the Girl Scouts for volunteering as patients. Other agencies involved included Rutgers EMS and Emergency Services, the Middlesex County Coordinator, the Holmes Marshall and Possumtown Fire Companies, Arbor Rescue Squad, Piscataway Police, and Piscataway OEM.

  

November 2nd - Today at around 1830 hours the River Road Fire Company was requested into the borough of Highland Park while the Highland Park Fire Department while they were operating at an apartment fire on Crowells Rd. River Road Engine 651 responded with Chaeuffer Barnoski, Asst. Chief Smolko, and Firefighters J. Cercatore, P. Cercatore, N. Recine, and Sorrentino.  The North Stelton Fire Company also responded for the standby at fire headquarters with Truck 627. Both companies stood by until 2015 hours, at which time they were released.

 

October 23rd - Today at around 18:45 hours the River Road Fire Company was requested into Rutgers University Bush Campus for a motor vehicle accident involving multiple vehicles. Rescue 655 responded with Lt. Maas and Firefighters P. Cercatore, Flasser, and Winkler along with Chief of department Florek in unit 658. Upon arrival the crew found a sport utility vehicle on its side along with multiple cars damaged from the incident. The accident amazingly occurred in the commuter parking lot located next the the Rutgers University football stadium.. There was no extrication needed, so the crew stood by for fluid leakage management and scene lighting for the accident investigation. Other units on scene include the Holmes Marshal Fire Company and Rutgers University Emergency Services.

  

 

October 16th - It is with the deepest regret that we inform the passing of longtime River Road Fire Company Life member Peter "Tippy" Timpanaro. Tippy was a great firefighter and friend who  exemplified what "brotherhood" was all about. His lifetime of contributions to the River Road Fire Company will be greatly missed.

September 22nd - At around 23:00 hours the River Road Fire Company was requested to respond in the area of 700 River Road for the reported motor vehicle accident with a vehicle on fire. Engine 651, Engine 652, Rescue 655, and Unit 658  responded with Chief of Department Florek, Asst. Chief Smolko, Lt. Maas, Lt. Szymonowicz and firefighters Abraham, Barnoski, Flasser, J. Cercatore, P. Cercatore, R. Recine, Simon, Sorrentino, and Winkler. Upon arrival Engine 651 found a fully involved pickup truck which ended up on its side after plowing through a tree, completely uprooting it and splitting it in half. The fire was extinguished, and three patients were transported to nearby hospitals. A fourth victim was pronounced on the scene, making the accident a fatality. Rescue 655 was requested to stay to provide lighting for the scene as police conducted their investigation. Other units on scene included the Holmes Marshall Fire Company and various BLS and ALS units. Units on scene cleared up after the investigation was complete around 0500 hours.

  

 

August 18th - At around 06:30 hours the River Road Fire Company received the call for one engine company to standby at New Brunswick fire headquarters while they were operating at a 4-alarm night club fire. Engine 652 responded with Asst. Chief Smolko and Firefighters J. Cercatore, Wiklanski, and Winkler. After standing by until around 09:30 hours Engine 652 was moved up to the scene. River Road members assisted in overhaul and extinguishing hotspots. Engine 652 cleared up around 12:30 hours.

  

 

 

August 17th - Tonight at 19:00 hours the River Road Fire Company held its monthly extrication drill. Joined by members of the Holmes Marshall Fire Company, the firefighters practiced door and roof removal, stabilization of cars, and other extrication techniques and skills.

August 15th - At around 2340 hours the River Road Fire Company received a report of a car fire at the Mayflower Apartments on River Road. Unit 658 responded with Chief Florek and Engine 652 responded  with Lt. Maas and Firefighters P. Cercatore,  J. Cercatore, and Simon. Upon arrival Unit 658 reported a working car fire with exposure problems to other cars. Engine 652's crew utilized the 1 1/2 foam line to contain the fire to the one car. Units cleared up around 0010 hours after overhaul, which was assisted by Possumtown Fire Company. Other units on scene included Possumtown Unit 638 and Engine 632.

 

August 15th - Around 1500 hours the River Road Fire Company was dispatched to a reported grass fire on Route 287 in the center median.  Engine 652 responded with Asst. Chief Smolko and Firefighter J. Cercatore. Upon arrival Engine 652 found a large area of brush on fire spreading both ways down 287. Engine 652 utilized a booster line and 1 1/2 foam line to contain the brush fire to an area of 20x20. Other units on scene were Possumtown Unit 638 and Holmes Marshall Unit 678. Units cleared the scene around 1530 hours.

August 9th - At around 21:00 hours the River Road Fire Company was called out to Rivercrest Drive for a working car fire in the driveway engulfing a tree. Unit 658 responded with Chief Florek and right behind him was Engine 652 with Asst. Chief Smolko, Lt. Maas, and Firefighters J. Cercatore, Daughton, N. Recine, and Wiklanski. Upon arrival Chief Florek found a pickup truck with heavy fire coming from the rear cab and bed. Engine 652's crew utilized the foam line to make quick work of the fire. After overhaul, Engine 652 returned to quarters around 21:20 hours.

  

 

July 9th - Today at 0930 hours the River Road Fire Company and East Franklin Fire Department participated in an SCBA Confidence Drill at the Piscataway Fire Training Grounds. Instructed by Captain Eddie Glover of the East Franklin Fire Department, members from both departments practiced following hose lines and maneuvering through obstacles such as attic rafters, passing between wall studs and removing wires with zero visibility. Both companies drilled until around 1230 hours.

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June 27th - The River Road Fire Company would like to welcome the newest addition to our family, Megan Elizabeth Winkler was born on Tuesday 06-27-2006, weighing in at 7lbs 7ozs to parents Firefighter Peter Winkler and Mother Kelly Winkler. Both parents and child are doing fine. Our congratulations to the family and proud parents.

 

June 25th - At around 13:00 hours the River Road Fire was dispatched to the area of River Road and Rt. 18 for the reported overturned tractor trailer with possible smoke coming from the trailer. Engine 651 responded with Chauffeur Kuenstner and firefighters Flasser and Sorrentino. While enroute Holmes Marshall 672 arrived on scene and reported an over turned lumber truck and minutes later Engine 651 arrived and reported to the command post. Firefighter Sorrentino checked the truck with a imaging camera and reported no fire. Engine 672 remained on scene for 3 hours while the truck was turned upright. Other units on scene included Rutgers Emergency Services and Piscataway Police.

 

 

June 22nd - At 1900 hours the River Road Fire Company held its monthly extrication drill at Station 650. Others in attendance for the drill included the Possumtown and Holmes Marshall Fire Companies. Members from all three companies practiced vehicle stabilization and procedures and ideas for door and roof removals.

 

 

June 14th - At around 1700 hours the River Road Fire Company was dispatched to a reported car fire between exits 9 and 8 on Route 287. Engine 651 responded with Chauffeur Barnoski and Firefighters J. Cercatore and Sorrentino. Shortly there after Engine 652 responded with Lt. Maas, Engineer Harding and Firefighters P. Cercatore and N. Recine. Upon arrival Engine 651 found a fully involved car fire just before exit 8. Firefighters J. Cercatore and Sorrentino stretched an 1 3/4 line and made a quick knock on the fire. Engine 652 provided assistance with overhaul and both units cleared up around 1720 hours.

April 30th - It is with the deepest regret that we inform the passing of River Road Fire Company Member Joe Smith (1943-2006).His contributions to the River Road Fire Company will be missed.

 

April 11th - It is with the utmost sorrow that the River Road Fire Company recognizes the ultimate sacrifice made by Firefighter Kevin Apuzzio, of the East Franklin Fire Department, today while performing a rescue at a structure fire in their district. Our prayers and thoughts go out to the friends and family of Firefighter Apuzzio and all of his brothers at Station 27 in this most difficult of times. Our prayers also go out to Firefighters Ryan Daughton, Nick Recine and their families who are currently recovering from their injuries also sustained at the same fire. Firefighters Daughton and Recine are members of both River Road and East Franklin serving both communities proudly. Here's to a speedy recovery for our two brothers.

 

March 23rd - At around 0800 hours the River Road Fire Company was dispatched to the area of River Road and Highland Avenue for the reported motor vehicle accident involving a school bus with entrapment. Units responding included Unit 658 with Chief of Department Florek, Rescue 655 with Chaueffer M. Syzmonowicz, Lt. Maas and  Firefighters J. Cercatore, N. Recine, and Simon, and Engine 652 with Asst. Chief Smolko and Firefighters Daughton, Fiorino, and Sorrentino responded. Upon arrival Unit 658 reported a yellow school bus hanging over a 5 ft. embankment with the drivers side pinned against a tree with the driver and driver's aide heavily pinned inside the bus.  Rescue 655 arrived and immediately stabilized the bus over the embankment. Upon Engine 652's arrival the right side of the bus was completely removed to gain access to the driver and driver's aide. Mutual aid was then requested from the North Stelton Fire Company's  heavy rescue since this would be a prolonged extrication. Rescue 655 and Engine 652's crew removed the right side of the bus and assisted BLS and ALS units in removing the driver's aide.  North Stelton then provided relief for the River Road crews and removed the driver.  Units cleared up around 1030 hours and returned to quarters.

  

 

March 16th - At 1900 hours members participated in a motor vehicle extrication drill, practicing techniques for vehicle stabilization, patient removal, and equipment use. The department personnel cut up 2 cars while gaining access to the trunk and hood, and performing door removals, a roof roll, dash roll and a 3rd door conversion. The drill lasted about 2 hours and helped reinforce extrication methods and ideas.

  

 

March 15th - Today around 1900 hours members of the River Road Fire Company went over to Rutgers University's Bush Campus for an Elevator Emergency Training class presented by Rutgers University Emergency Services Captain Keleman. Members were familiarized with the different types of elevators and their operations along with several rescue techniques in both a classroom and practical session. The class concluded around 2130 hours and allowed members to gain knowledge and new techniques in elevator rescue.

    

 

March 14th - At 1845 hours River Road Fire Company Engine 651 and Truck 656 were requested to respond into Piscataway District 4 where the North Stelton Fire Company was operating at a working apartment complex fire on Mindy Lane. Engine 651 and Truck 656 responded with Asst. Chief Smolko, Capt. Kuenstner, Engineer Harding, and Firefighters Abraham, J. Cercatore, P. Cercatore, Flasser, R. Recine, and Wojtowicz. Upon arrive Truck 656 laddered the roof and setup next to North Stelton Truck 627 who were setup for access to the third floor. The truck crew proceeded to ventilate the roof with a trench cut which would aid in stopping the fire from progressing and causing even further damage to the structure. As the fire spread, an addition Truck from Dunellen was called in and all 3 proceeded to knock the fire with master streams. In order to accommodate the 3 master streams in operation, 2 additional 5 inch supply lines were laid totaling about 2500 ft. Companies on scene included the New Market Fire Dept., Possumtown Fire Co., Holmes Marshall Fire Co., South Plainfield, Metuchen, New Brunswick, several BLS units, and several other companies. River Road crews remained on scene until about 0230 hours helping with overhaul operations and knocking hot spots.

 

March 2nd - Today firefighters Daughton and Wiklanski were detailed to Knollwood Elementary School in support of the Reading Across America Campaign and also for Dr. Seuss's Birthday. Firefighters Daughton and Wiklanski read stories to children in grades K-3 and presented a Fire Safety demonstration. Afterwards, they made their rounds through the classrooms and answered questions from the students and staff. Assisting them throughout the detail, was Dr. Paula Maas, Board of Education member and wife of Lieutenant Estevan Maas. Firefighters Daughton and Wiklanski were invited back, along with the rest of the River Road Fire Company for a presentation during Fire Prevention Week in October. Details are pending regarding the fire prevention opportunity to interact with the kids.

  

 

 

February 28th - At around 1030 hours the River Road Fire Company was dispatched into the Borough of Middlesex at 145 River Road for an explosion/working structure fire. Engine 651 responded with Chauffeur Kuenstner and Firefighters Barnoski Jr., N. Recine, J. Cercatore and Sorrentino. Engine 651 arrived on location within minutes and was told that they were to provide coverage at the scene for the borough. The explosion started in a holding tank for sulfur amines and as Middlesex companies started to extinguish the fire  they reported fire showing from the roof of the warehouse and other holding tanks so command ordered the crew from 651 to report to the rear of the structure. Operations ordered Firefighters Barnoski Jr., N. Recine and Sorrentino to take a 1 3/4 hand line to the main fire tank and after a few minutes of operating the line, the crew was covered in the chemical. Middlesex and Bound Brook were operating on the roof and inside the warehouse extinguishing other parts of the fire. The crew then took 2 hand lines to the main tank and started to flow foam and after approximately 45 minutes the fire was extinguished. The entire crew had to be decontaminated and their gear was removed and put in to plastic bags which were to be destroyed by the EPA. Units operating on scene were Middlesex Fire Dept., Bound Brook Fire Dept., Green Brook Fire Dept., Dunellen Fire Dept., a full response from Middlesex County Hazmat and a full response from Middlesex OEM along with EMS from Middlesex and Bound Brook. Engine 651 operated on scene for 5 hours after which they were released from the scene and returned to quarters.

 

February 18th - Tonight members of the River Road Fire Company and representatives from several surrounding companies, including the North Stelton Fire Company, New Market Fire Department, Highland Park Fire Department, and several others, gathered for the 2006 Officer's Installation Dinner. The festivities included presentation of awards for 25 years of service to Ex-Chiefs Phil Cercatore and John Smolko who were also proudly made life members of the company. In addition to the 25 year awards, a special award was given to Ex-Chief Charles Flasser for his 45+ years of service. Congratulations to all award recipients and we appreciate your continued service for the company. As well as awards being given out, the fire company also welcomed in its 2006 Line and Executive Officers. A memorable slideshow presentation was also created by banquet committee chairman Firefighter Ryan Daughton. The festivities went long into the night and was a good time for everyone attending. The night would not have been possible without the help of the banquet committee members, Ladies Auxiliary, and everyone else that had a part in the events organization, so a special thank you goes out to everyone involved.

  

 

February 3rd - Today at around 1800 hours Cub Scouts Pack 20 came to the firehouse for a tour and the opportunity to learn about firefighting and the equipment used. Engineer Harding performed the guided tour along with Firefighter Sorrentino serving as a model for firefighting gear and equipment. The kids were guided throughout the firehouse while being shown everything from turnout gear to the tools on the apparatus.

    

 

February 1st - Today the River Road Fire Company congratulates Firefighter Christopher Sorrentino for successfully completing his probationary period and becoming a full member. We would also like to welcome newly sworn in member Michael Hayoun.

 

January 27th - At around 1530 hours the River Road Fire Company was requested to send Engine 652 into the Township of Edison for the working Wildland/Urban Interface fire. Engine 652 responded with Chauffer Maas, Captain Kuenstner, and Firefighters Abraham, Daughton, J. Cercatore, P. Cercatore, and Wiklanski. Upon arrival Engine 652 was assigned to the staging area, with New Market Fire Department Engine 661, awaiting the arrival of additional resources to complete the implemented CAFS Engine Strike Team. As soon as all resources had been assembled, the strike team was assigned into the woodlands surrounding the Expo Center to fight a structural fire at an abandoned auto shop deep in the woods. The Edison Fire Department had established command and was utilizing Truck 1 as an elevated observation post enabling them to view the 10+ acres involved.. After making several attacks on the auto body shop, Engine 652 was reassigned to Dock Road to relieve New Brunswick Engine 2 and perform a fire watch. Chief of Department Florek and Asst. Chief Smolko arrived on location in unit 658 with much needed refreshments for the crew. At the conclusion of the watch, Engine 652 was released and returned to quarters at around 2030 hours. Other units on location included: Edison FD, Dunellen FD, South Plainfield FD, Melrose Hose Company, East Brunswick Dist. 1, East Brunswick Dist. 3(Brookview), New Market FD, South River FD, Monroe Twp Sta. 51, Fords FD, Middlesex County Hazmat, Middlesex County OEM, NJSP, NJ Forest Fire Service, several BLS Units, and multiple helicopters which were utilized for performing water drops.

  

  

 

 

January 25th - Today at 18:30 hours, members of the River Road Fire Company, including Chauffer R. Recine, and Firefighters J. Cercatore, Daughton, N. Recine, Simon, and Sorrentino on Engine 651, paid a visit to Conackamack Middle School to educate a Girls Scout Troop on fire safety. The members showed the troop many of the tools used for search and rescue such as the thermal imaging camera.  Many of the girl scouts were impressed and asked the firefighters many good questions about what to do in the event of a fire. The evening concluded with the firefighters giving the girl scouts a tour of the engine and passing out some informative activity books on fire prevention. The crew returned to quarters around 20:15 hours.

  

 

January 23rd - At 1900 hours the River Road Fire Company was dispatched for the reported car fire in the area of the River Road and Centennial Avenue jug handle. Engine 652 responded with Chauffer Maas and Firefighters Abraham, J. Cercatore, Daughton, N. Recine, and Winkler. Rescue 655 responded with Chauffer Kuenstner and Firefighters Simon and Sorrentino. Chief of Department Florek arrived and established command and first arriving units found a car into the woods with no fire showing. Engine 652's crew secured the vehicles electrical system and checked for any possible smoldering within the vehicles engine compartment or in the surrounding vegetation. Crews remained on scene for approximately 15 minutes after which time they returned to quarters.

     

 

January 23rd - At 1530 hours the River Road Fire Company was dispatched into Rutgers University at the Bush Campus Center for the reported kitchen fire in the food court area. Engine 652 and Truck 656 responded with Chauffers Kuenstner and P. Cercatore, and Firefighters Abraham, J. Cercatore, Flasser, N. Recine, and Sorrentino. Unit 638 arrived and established command and met up with Rutgers Emergency Services personnel. Arriving Engine 652 and Holmes Marshall Engine 672 crews were sent in and extinguished what remained of the fire on the stove and utilized a thermal imaging camera to look for any possible extension. Crews operated on scene for approximately 20 minutes and then returned to quarters.   

 

January 21st - The River Road Fire Company was requested to provide a standby crew for North Stelton Fire and Rescue in Piscataway District #4 while they were out of service for their annual banquet. Engine 651 was sent over with a crew consisting of Chauffer P. Cercatore, Lt. Szymonowicz, and Firefighters Abraham, Sorrentino, and Winkler. Along with River Road Fire an ambulance from South Plainfield was also present providing EMS coverage. The crew arrived around 1800 hours and provided coverage until 2300 hours after which time they returned to quarters.

    

 

 

January 19th - At 0730 hours the River Road Fire Company along with several members of the East Franklin Fire Department participated in an extrication drill. East Franklin came with a full crew on Squad 27, as well as Chief of Department Dan Krushinski, to what turned out to be a very informative night. Members from East Franklin demonstrated several skills during the drill and showed some new equipment which turned out to be very useful. Crews drilled until approximately 2200 hours and after discussing future combined drills and a growing relationship the night concluded. River Road Fire welcomes this combined training effort now and in the future with the East Franklin Fire Department as well as all surrounding departments.

 

January 8th - At 0100 hours the River Road Fire Company was requested into the Borough of Highland Park for the cover assignment while they operated at a working commercial structure fire. Engine 651 responded with Chauffer Smolko, Lt. Maas, and Firefighters Abraham, J. Cercatore, and Sorrentino. The engine crew provided coverage for approximately two hours and then returned to quarters.

  

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