Weekly Feature



2018-09-13 / Front Page

Water pressure an added challenge while responders battle Lancaster fire

by AMY STULICK Editor


Eight fire companies battle a blaze at a Pleasant View Drive home, after getting its three occupants to safety. 
Photo by Don Cialone Eight fire companies battle a blaze at a Pleasant View Drive home, after getting its three occupants to safety. Photo by Don Cialone A total of eight fire companies responded to a house fire on Pleasant View Drive Sunday morning, with Bowmansville Fire Company being the first to respond.

Three individuals were safely evacuated from the home, one of whom is still at Erie County Medical Center for non-life-threatening injuries as of Tuesday afternoon, according to Bowmansville Fire Chief Tom Trzepacz.

The department was made aware of the fire at 8:42 a.m.

“It’s still under investigation, but the garage and part of the house nearest the garage was fully involved when we got there, as well as the vehicle in front of the garage, were on fire,” said Trzepacz.

“The fire, itself, was contained to the house, but there was some heat damage to the neighbor to the west.”

Water pressure on the street proved to be an added challenge, with firefighters drawing from nearby hydrants on Stutzman Road and Heritage Drive, and eventually going to Warner and Transit roads for a larger water main line.

Pleasant View, Stutzman and Heritage all draw from a 6-inch line, while Warner and Transit have a 24-inch water main, according to Trzepacz.

“The initial hydrant was in front of the house that we hooked up to, and we did get water out of it right away, but at some point early on we lost water pressure on that line,” added Trzepacz.

“I know the town is looking into it. I did have the Water Authority out that day to speak with them, and they spoke with my guys that were in charge of the water operation and tried to get something rectified right then and there.”

Although adequate water pressure would have certainly helped put the fire out faster, the extent of damage is estimated to be the same.

“When we first arrived on location, the fire was pretty intense. The garage and part of the house was already fully involved. In terms of the damages, the fire was initially so bad that it wouldn’t have made a huge difference as far as saving the house and the contents,” said Trzepacz.

“There was quite a bit of damage done by the time we got there.”

The home itself is estimated to be a total loss, according to Trzepacz.

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